Ancient ozone holes may have sterilized forests 252 million years ago

Barren trees could have collapsed food webs, leading to Earth’s greatest mass extinction

dwarf pines

BARREN TREES  Modern dwarf pines (shown) become unable to reproduce when irradiated by ultraviolet-B lamps. A similar fate may have befallen forests 252 million years ago, when massive bursts of volcanic gases likely weakened Earth’s ozone shield.

J. Benca

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