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Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 10:07 EDT

EARTH: Great Lakes Geologic Sunken Treasure

July 18, 2011

Shipwreck enthusiasts find a bounty of nautical relics preserved in the chilly depths of the Great Lakes. But only within the last decade have explorers and scientists begun to reveal the secrets of a much different – and much more ancient – sunken treasure in Lake Huron: sinkholes.

As EARTH explores in its August feature “Great Lakes Geologic Sunken Treasure,” researchers have recently begun exploring several mysterious sinkholes in Lake Huron. These pockets of water teem with microbial life similar to that found around deep ocean hydrothermal vents or beneath ice-covered Antarctic lakes, not the kinds of microorganisms normally found in our own backyards.

Read what these scientists are finding in the exotic environments and what they might tell us about life on early Earth. Plus, read other stories on topics such as how Europe and other parts of the world are trying to surmount the sociological and political issues surrounding mining, how natural gas fracking is affecting well water and how airlines are preparing for volcanic eruptions, all in the August issue. And don’t miss the cover stories about traveling to Australia and New Zealand.

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