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A Comet Strike 13,000 Years Ago May Have Sparked a Civilization Shift

Posted by Guy Pirro 07/12/2021 02:12AM

A Comet Strike 13,000 Years Ago May Have Sparked a Civilization Shift

The Younger Dryas period is one of the best known examples of an abrupt environmental change. About 14,500 years ago, Earth's climate began to slowly shift from a cold glacial world to a warmer interglacial state. Partway through this transition, temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere suddenly returned to near-glacial conditions. But at the end of the Younger Dryas period, about 11,500 years ago, things changed abruptly. For example, in Greenland, temperatures rose 10°C (18°F) in a decade. A new study at the University of Edinburgh suggests that around 13,000 years ago, a comet hit Earth and triggered the climate change. Now, 13,000 years is not long ago in the greater scheme of things and humans were clearly around at the time. What effect did this rapid climate change have on them? One thing that jumps out to the researchers – our ancestors in the in the Fertile Crescent of southwest Asia during this time switched from hunter-gatherer lifestyles to ones centered on agriculture and the creation of permanent settlements. Also, this major cosmic catastrophe appears to have been memorialized on the giant stone pillars of Gobekli Tepe in Turkey about 11,000 years ago. The researchers believe that this cosmic event (known as the Younger Dryas impact or the Clovis Comet impact) may have set in motion the changes in social lifestyles that eventually led to human civilization as we know it today.


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