Earth During the Early Paleozoic Era

The time is 540 million years ago. The Proterozoic Eon has come to an end. The Paleozoic Era is beginning. Earth looks very different. The continent of Laurentia (what is now North America) has split from Rodinia. Laurentia is located near the equator. It is surrounded by an ocean.

Gondwana (what is now Africa and South America) is moving very quickly. It is moving toward the South Pole. Baltica (what is now Northern Europe and Russia) is in the tropical zone. Lands that are now China and Australia lay in temperate waters.

The climate is moderate. The oxygen levels are increasing. The carbon dioxide levels are decreasing.

There is no tectonic activity on the continents themselves. No mountains are forming. The Precambrian rocks are eroding quickly. Quartz is being carried to the shorelines. Large sandy beaches are forming at the edges of the continents.

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