Gaia earth image

Scientists Finally have an Explanation for the ‘Gaia Puzzle’

By James Dyke, Tim Lenton, The Conversation

We will likely never know how life on Earth started. Perhaps in a shallow sunlit pool. Or in the crushing ocean depths miles beneath the surface near fissures in the Earth’s crust that spewed out hot mineral-rich soup. While there is good evidence for life at least 3.7 billion years ago, we don’t know precisely when it started. But these passing aeons have produced something perhaps even more remarkable: life has persisted. Despite massive asteroid impacts, cataclysmic volcano activity and extreme climate change, life has managed to not just cling on to our rocky world but to thrive. How did this happen? Research we recently published with colleagues in Trends in Ecology and Evolution offers an important part of the answer, providing a new explanation for the Gaia hypothesis. Developed by scientist and inventor James Lovelock, and microbiologist Lynn Margulis, the Gaia hypothesis originally proposed that life, through its interactions...