WeatherTalk: Present-day climate change is certainly not the first

The geological record offers strong evidence of climate upheavals throughout prehistory.

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FARGO — The climate of our planet has been anything but static. One particular period of climate upheaval occurred during the late Triassic Period, around 234 million years ago, in an event known as the Carnian Pluvial Episode. The records of geological strata and fossils indicate a dramatic change from a warm and arid world to a tropical and humid world filled with swamps, ferns, and dinosaurs.

The geological record offers strong evidence of numerous climate upheavals such as this throughout prehistory, often with results that dramatically changed life on Earth. Climatologists recognize that chemical changes to the atmosphere, whether natural or anthropogenic, are more than capable of changing the state of the Earth's climate, which is why the sudden increase in greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels is such a concern today.

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John Wheeler is Chief Meteorologist for WDAY, a position he has had since May of 1985. Wheeler grew up in the South, in Louisiana and Alabama, and cites his family's move to the Midwest as important to developing his fascination with weather and climate. Wheeler lived in Wisconsin and Iowa as a teenager. He attended Iowa State University and achieved a B.S. degree in Meteorology in 1984. Wheeler worked about a year at WOI-TV in central Iowa before moving to Fargo and WDAY..
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