An evolution scientist asks: What if there was already the ability to use oxygen (for energy) well before it became widely available? A baseless speculation to see if we can upset our assumptions about development of life on earth. Read and believe it. It reads as fiction and in fact, it is fiction.
Wouldn’t that be strange? If not the presence of oxygen found consumers but that there were oxygen-hungry creatures before much oxygen appeared on Mother Earth. Indeed, that would be strange. And it can be easily proven that it didn’t happen like that.
Everybody knows that green plants breathe in CO2 and breathe out O2, i.e. oxygen. But many also know that’s powered by sunlight. In the dark, green (and others) plants use oxygen to get energy. That’s why nursing staff used to remove flowers and plants out of the patients’ rooms before light-out.
So, plants that produced oxygen also used oxygen. There was no progress from having oxygen to discovering that it can be fuel, or vice versa. So, plants used oxygen that sun-bathed green plants produced. And animals, arriving much later, then did the same. What’s not to understand here?
Possibly, life found tools to utilize some other molecule that then also proved working with oxygen. But, surely, it wouldn’t have dragged along complicated enzymes of no use at the time. That would be as ridiculous as one hand clapping and other brainteasers meant to shut down our brains.
Life is as least as wasteful as possible. If oxygen is highly reactive, as the article says, then, of course, organisms would utilize it. And when plants were equipped to even use sunlight, certainly they could use oxygen.
This probe sounds to me as coming to the startling conclusion that not only do people step into buses to get somewhere but they also get out.