Temperatures soared to nearly 74 degrees Celsius, research suggests
The Permian period was hot, hot, hot: Around 270 million years ago, air temperatures near the equator may have soared to almost 74º Celsius or 165º Fahrenheit, scientists report March 18 in Geology. That’s far hotter than anywhere on Earth today.
“I can’t even imagine what it would have been like,” says Neil Tabor, a sedimentary geochemist at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, who wasn’t involved in the research. The intense heat may explain why plants and animals vanished from parts of the tropics at this time, he says, a disappearance that prece