Algae Across the Ages: What Does the Future Hold?

Match each event described below with its position on the timeline as in the example:

  • The first evidence of humans on earth—which means that compared to algae, we humans are newcomers!
  • A scientific journal documents that dogs in Europe were poisoned by a harmful algal bloom.
  • The first alga cell forms when one single-celled organism merges with a cyanobacteria and starts photosynthesizing. 
  • The United States bans use of phosphates in laundry detergents to control the growth of harmful algal blooms.
  • Mosses and simple plants with algae ancestors become the first organisms to start living on land.
  • Algae are proposed as an alternative fuel to petroleum.
  • Women in Northern Africa and the Middle East use algae to color their lips red. In Asia, people use algae as medicine to cure a condition called goiter.
  • Algae release enough oxygen into the atmosphere to support future life on the planet.
  • The newly formed Earth has a lava surface and almost no atmosphere.
  • People in South America leave behind chewed and burned bits of algae, which modern archeologists will later find. 
  • Microalgae are used to deliver drugs, make hormones, treat allergies, fight cancer, and more.
  • People farm algae in East Asia. For comparison, humans farmed crops on land at least 9,000 years earlier.