Origins of the Ocean

Topics: Water, Ocean, Indian Ocean Pages: 2 (480 words) Published: October 17, 2011
How did the ancient oceans change to become what we now see today? It is a popular opinion that the World was once a supercontinent called “Pangaea”. At this time there was only one ocean called “Panthalassa”. The pieces of the supercontinent were giant plates that fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. Through years and years of continental drift, the giant jigsaw pieces became the continents of the world we know today. The splitting apart of the continents gave way to new oceans. The continents continue to drift today. Our oceans are constantly moving. The Atlantic and Indian Oceans move apart one to six inches a year. While the Atlantic and Indian Oceans are growing wider, the Pacific Ocean is shrinking. The Red Sea is widening too, one day it might be called the Red Ocean. Where did the water that currently fills our oceans, lakes, and rivers come from? It is theorized that millions of years ago, when the planet was new, it was so hot and full of volcanoes that any water at all would have boiled away. The Volcanoes let off steam that filled the atmosphere with moisture. As the planet cooled down, the moisture built up and produced clouds that returned the moisture to the ground. The cycle continued for millions of years until we had the oceans of today. Briefly describe how the water cycle works today, and explain how this could impact life in the oceans. The sun heats up the oceans and Lakes, this causes the water to evaporate into the air. The sun also heats up the plants and trees. They lose moisture out of their leaves that is called transpiration, it goes into the air. The vapor in the air gets cold and changes back to liquid. This condensation creates clouds. When the clouds get so heavy from the condensation they release precipitation in the form of rain, hail, sleet or snow. This precipitation falls directly into the ocean and over the land, the water travels over and under the land and heads back to the streams, rivers and the...
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