LK1 Sedimentation > LK1 Sedimentation



Age of the Earth:
Young Earth Evidence
101 evidences for a young age of the earth and the universe
by Don Batten
Published: 4 June 2009(GMT+10)
Young Earth Evidence from Human History and from BIology
Young Earth Evidence from Geology
Young Earth Evidence from Radiometric Dating
Young Solar System Evidence from Astronomy
Additional Sources
Young Earth Evidence from Geology
Geological evidence for a young age of the earth

Defining the Flood/post-Flood boundary in sedimentary rocks

Search Cement, Cement agent, Lithification

Radical folding at Eastern Beach, near Auckland in New Zealand, indicates that the sediments were soft and pliable when folded, inconsistent with a long time for their formation. Such folding can be seen world-wide and is consistent with a young age of the earth.
Scarcity of plant fossils in many formations containing abundant animal / herbivore fossils. E.g., the Morrison Formation (Jurassic) in Montana. See Origins 21(1):51–56, 1994. Also the Coconino sandstone in the Grand Canyon has many track-ways (animals), but is almost devoid of plants. Implication: these rocks are not ecosystems of an 'era' buried in situ over eons of time as evolutionists claim. The evidence is more consistent with catastrophic transport then burial during the massive global Flood of Noah's day. This eliminates supposed evidence for millions of years.
Thick, tightly bent strata without sign of melting or fracturing. E.g. the Kaibab upwarp in Grand Canyon indicates rapid folding before the sediments had time to solidify (the sand grains were not elongated under stress as would be expected if the rock had hardened). This wipes out hundreds of millions of years of time and is consistent with extremely rapid formation during the biblical Flood. See Warped earth (written by a geophysicist).
Polystrate fossils—tree trunks in coal (Araucaria spp. king billy pines, celery top pines, in southern hemisphere coal). There are also polystrate tree trunks in the Yellowstone fossilized forests and Joggins, Nova Scotia and in many other places. Polystrate fossilized lycopod trunks occur in northern hemisphere coal, again indicating rapid burial / formation of the organic material that became coal.
Experiments show that with conditions mimicking natural forces, coal forms quickly; in weeks for brown coal to months for black coal. It does not need millions of years. Furthermore, long time periods could be an impediment to coal formation because of the increased likelihood of the permineralization of the wood, which would hinder coalification.
Experiments show that with conditions mimicking natural forces, oil forms quickly; it does not need millions of years, consistent with an age of thousands of years.
Experiments show that with conditions mimicking natural forces, opals form quickly, in a matter of weeks, not millions of years, as had been claimed.
Evidence for rapid, catastrophic formation of coal beds speaks against the hundreds of millions of years normally claimed for this, including Z-shaped seams that point to a single depositional event producing these layers.
Evidence for rapid petrifaction of wood speaks against the need for long periods of time and is consistent with an age of thousands of years.
Clastic dykes and pipes (intrusion of sediment through overlying sedimentary rock) show that the overlying rock strata were still soft when they formed. This drastically compresses the time scale for the deposition of the penetrated rock strata. See, Walker, T., Fluidisation pipes: Evidence of large-scale watery catastrophe, Journal of Creation (TJ) 14(3):8–9, 2000.
Para(pseudo)conformities—where one rock stratum sits on top of another rock stratum but with supposedly millions of years of geological time missing, yet the contact plane lacks any significant erosion; that is, it is a 'flat gap'. E.g. Coconino sandstone / Hermit shale in the Grand Canyon (supposedly a 10 million year gap in time). The thick Schnebly Hill Formation (sandstone) lies between the Coconino and Hermit in central Arizona. See Austin, S.A., Grand Canyon, monument to catastrophe, ICR, Santee, CA, USA, 1994 and Snelling, A., The case of the 'missing' geologic time, Creation 14(3):31–35, 1992.
The presence of ephemeral markings (raindrop marks, ripple marks, animal tracks) at the boundaries of paraconformities show that the upper rock layer has been deposited immediately after the lower one, eliminating many millions of years of 'gap' time. See references in Para(pseudo)conformities.
Inter-tonguing of adjacent strata that are supposedly separated by millions of years also eliminates many millions of years of supposed geologic time. The case of the 'missing' geologic time; Mississippian and Cambrian strata interbedding: 200 million years hiatus in question, CRSQ 23(4):160–167.
The lack of bioturbation (worm holes, root growth) at paraconformities (flat gaps) reinforces the lack of time involved where evolutionary geologists insert many millions of years to force the rocks to conform with the 'given' timescale of billions of years.
The almost complete lack of clearly recognizable soil layers anywhere in the geologic column. Geologists do claim to have found lots of 'fossil' soils (paleosols), but these are quite different to soils today, lacking the features that characterize soil horizons; features that are used in classifying different soils. Every one that has been investigated thoroughly proves to lack the characteristics of proper soil. If 'deep time' were correct, with hundreds of millions of years of abundant life on the earth, there should have been ample opportunities many times over for soil formation. See Klevberg, P. and Bandy, R., CRSQ 39:252–68; CRSQ 40:99–116, 2003; Walker, T., Paleosols: digging deeper buries 'challenge' to Flood geology, Journal of Creation 17(3):28–34, 2003.
Limited extent of unconformities (unconformity: a surface of erosion that separates younger strata from older rocks). Surfaces erode quickly (e.g. Badlands, South Dakota), but there are very limited unconformities. There is the 'great unconformity' at the base of the Grand Canyon, but otherwise there are supposedly ~300 million years of strata deposited on top without any significant unconformity. This is again consistent with a much shorter time of deposition of these strata. See Para(pseudo)conformities.
The discovery that underwater landslides ('turbidity currents') travelling at some 50 km/h can create huge areas of sediment in a matter of hours (Press, F., and Siever, R., Earth, 4th ed., Freeman & Co., NY, USA, 1986). Sediments thought to have formed slowly over eons of time are now becoming recognized as having formed extremely rapidly. See for example, A classic tillite reclassified as a submarine debris flow (Technical).
Flume tank research with sediment of different particle sizes show that layered rock strata that were thought to have formed over huge periods of time in lake beds actually formed very quickly. Even the precise layer thicknesses of rocks were duplicated after they were ground into their sedimentary particles and run through the flume. See Experiments in stratification of heterogeneous sand mixtures, Sedimentation Experiments: Nature finally catches up! and Sandy Stripes Do many layers mean many years?
Observed examples of rapid canyon formation; for example, Providence Canyon in southwest Georgia, Burlingame Canyon near Walla Walla, Washington, and Lower Loowit Canyon near Mount St Helens. The rapidity of the formation of these canyons, which look similar to other canyons that supposedly took many millions of years to form, brings into question the supposed age of the canyons that no one saw form.
Rate of erosion of coastlines, horizontally. E.g. Beachy Head, UK, loses a metre of coast to the sea every six years.
Rate of erosion of continents vertically is not consistent with the assumed old age of the earth. See Creation 22(2):18–21.
Existence of significant flat plateaux that are 'dated' at many millions of years old ('elevated paleoplains'). An example is Kangaroo Island (Australia). C.R. Twidale, a famous Australian physical geographer wrote: "the survival of these paleoforms is in some degree an embarrassment to all the commonly accepted models of landscape development." Twidale, C.R. On the survival of paleoforms, American Journal of Science 5(276):77–95, 1976 (quote on p. 81). See Austin, S.A., Did landscapes evolve? Impact 118, April 1983.
Water gaps. These are gorges cut through mountain ranges where rivers run. They occur worldwide and are part of what evolutionary geologists call 'discordant drainage systems'. They are 'discordant' because they don't fit the deep time belief system. The evidence fits them forming rapidly in a much younger age framework where the gorges were cut in the recessive stage / dispersive phase of the global Flood of Noah's day. See Oard, M., Do rivers erode through mountains? Water gaps are strong evidence for the Genesis Flood, Creation 29(3):18–23, 2007.
Direct evidence that oil is forming today in the Guaymas Basin and in Bass Strait is consistent with a young earth (although not necessary for a young earth).

... British geologist Derek Ager in his book The Nature of the Stratigraphical Record4 marvelled at the way
- sedimentary rocks layers persisted for thousands of kilometres across continents.
- He mentioned the chalk beds that form the famous White Cliffs of Dover in Southern England and explained that they are also found in Antrim in Northern Ireland, and can be traced into northern France, northern Germany, southern Scandinavia to Poland, Bulgaria and eventually to Turkey and Egypt. He described many other cases, yet even after that he said, “There are even more examples of very thin units that persist over fantastically large areas … ”
- Another example that Ager could have mentioned is the Great Artesian Basin. This covers most of Eastern Australia (figure 2) and its individual strata run continuously for thousands of kilometres.5 Its sandstone members store enormous volumes of underground water, which allowed ranchers to graze livestock and settle the arid outback (figure 3). One of the formations within this basin, often mentioned in the news when companies were drilling for oil and gas, is the so-called Hutton Sandstone. This rock formation, an easily-recognized target, was buried as much as 2 km in the middle of the basin but exposed at the surface at the edges—at places like Carnarvon Gorge in Queensland.
- Layers of sediment blanketing such huge areas point to something unusual happening in the past. Today, blankets of sediments are not being deposited across the vast areas of the continents; if they were it would be difficult for humans to survive. Rather, sedimentation is localized, confined to the deltas of rivers and along the narrow strips of coastline. Layers of sediment blanketing such huge areas point to something unusual happening in the past.
- A curious feature of these sedimentary blankets is that they contain evidence of rapid, energetic deposition. Geologists describe various strata as a “fluvial environment” or a “high energy braided stream system”,6 which is another way of saying the sediments were deposited by large volumes of fast flowing water that covered a very large area.
Jones, D.C. and Clark, N.R., Geology of the Penrith 1:100,000 sheet 9030, NSW Geological Survey, Sydney, p.3, 1991.
Branagan, D.F and Packham, G.H., Field Geology of New South Wales, Department of Mineral Resources, Sydney, p.38, 2000.
Sloss, L.L.(ed.), The Geology of North America, Vol. D-2, Sedimentary Cover—North American Craton: U.S., The Geological Society of America, ch. 3, p. 47–51, 1988.
Ager, D., The Nature of the Stratigraphical Record, MacMillan, pp. 1–13, 1973.
Assessment of Groundwater Resources in the Broken Hill Region, Geoscience Australia, Professional Opinion 2008/05, ch. 6, 2008;
Day, R.W., et al., Queensland Geology: A Companion Volume, Geological Survey of Queensland, Brisbane, pp. 127–128, 1983.
The Geologic Column: Does it exist?
There are a number of locations on the earth where all ten periods of the Phanerozoic geologic column have been assigned. However, this does not mean that the geological column is real. Firstly, the presence or absence of all ten periods is not the issue, because the thickness of the sediment pile, even in those locations, is only a small fraction (8–16% or less) of the total thickness of the hypothetical geologic column. Without question, most of the column is missing in the field.
- Secondly, those locations where it has been possible to assign all ten periods represent less than 0.4% of the earth’s surface, or 1% if the ocean basins are excluded. Obviously it is the exception, rather than the rule, to be able to assign all of the ten Phanerozoic periods to the sedimentary pile in any one location on the earth. It does not engender confidence in the reality of the geological column when it is absent 99% of the time.
Thirdly, even where the ten periods have been assigned, the way in which they were assigned can be quite subjective. It is a well known fact, for example, that many unfossiliferous Permian rocks are ‘dated’ as such solely because they happen to be sandwiched between faunally-dated Carboniferous and faunally-dated Triassic rocks. Without closer examination, it is impossible to determine how many of the ‘ten Phanerozoic systems superposed’ have been assigned on the basis of index fossils (by which each of the Phanerozoic systems have been defined) and how many have been assigned by indirect methods such as lithological similarity, comparable stratigraphic level, and schematic depictions. Clearly, if the periods in these locations were assigned by assuming that the geological column was real, then it is circular reasoning to use the assigned ten periods to argue the reality of the column.
Genesis and Historical Geology: A Personal Perspective GUY BERTHAULT
Sedimentation experiments using heterogeneous mixtures of particles carried by flowing water have shown that the strata and sedimentary layers produced are generally distinct from one another, contrary to the stratigraphic principles of superposition and continuity. These principles overlook the hydraulic conditions necessary for sediment transport in transgressions. However, the relationships between observed contemporaneous hydraulic conditions and sedimentary structures can be used to determine the hydraulic conditions responsible for the sedimentary deposits of the geological record. Thus further flume experiments are now being undertaken in the hydraulics laboratory at the Colorado State University (Fort Collins) to produce a data set of 10,000 results from which the relationship between current speed and particle size can be determined. By these means it is already possible to show that the diluvial conditions of the year-long Biblical Flood were sufficient to deposit the sedimentary sequences of the geological record (for example, of the Grand Canyon region, USA). My religious instruction started when I was 10 years old. I believed in the historical reality of Genesis. Shortly afterwards, in a secular school, I commenced a course of natural science which included historical geology. This taught a long chronology of the Earth and corresponding evolution of the species, which seemed to me to contradict Genesis. Subsequently, I received a scientific education at the French Ecole Polytechnique, then pursued a professional business career. I have never forgotten the feeling these contradictions had on me in my youth. Some years ago, I again studied geological history based upon stratigraphy.

A stratum is defined as a lithological unit between limit surfaces in sedimentary rocks. It often provides evidence of sorting of the particles of which it is composed, with their size decreasing from bottom to top of the stratum. The limit surfaces are:- (1) separations between the fine particles at the top of one stratum and the large ones at the bottom of the stratum which covers it; (2) bedding planes which can separate two strata; and (3) those corresponding to a mechanical removal of sediments due to erosion. The thickness of strata varies from less than a millimetre to more than a metre. A series of superposed strata having the same lithological content, for example, sand, clay or limestone, constitutes a facies. For two centuries, since stratigraphy was founded, and without formal proof, superposed strata, and on a larger scale facies, have been identified as successive sedimentary layers. As a result, superposed strata were used to define relative chronology. The principles of stratigraphy arose from the belief that strata and facies are successive layers. The first principle, that of superposition, is defined in France (which with England was the cradle of stratigraphy) as: Layers (strata) having been deposited horizontally, one upon the other, each layer is older than the one which covers it. 1 The first part of the principle, layers (strata) having been deposited horizontally, assumes a horizontal area of deposition, and the average velocity of sedimentation having to be uniform across the deposit area, for each CEN Tech. J., vol. 12, no. 2, 1998 213 stratum to be horizontal. This latter condition is not met in contemporary sedimentation, where the velocity of sedimentation is variable as a function of the place and the depth of water. Secondly, the principle of continuity:- Each layer (stratum) has the same age at any point. This principle excludes the existence of ocean currents which cause the particles composing the layer to deposit successively in the direction of the current. Consequently, the layer is not the same age at all points. Oceans today are traversed by currents. These two principles provided the base upon which geologists, at the end of the eighteenth century and beginning of the nineteenth, established age correlations between sedimentary rock sites separated by distances exhibiting the same series of superposed fades. Later, the age correlations were established from fossils, which gave rise to the third principle, that of palaeontological identity:- Two layers with the same palaeontological content are the same age. This is another expression of the principle of continuity, and similarly excludes the effect of ocean currents, which as with particles, cause organisms to be swept along and deposited successively in the sediments forming the layer in which they become fossils. In consequence they, too, would not necessarily have the same age. Constituted in this way, time in the geological time- scale was only relative. The fourth principle of uniform- itarianism had to be added. This claimed that the rate of sedimentation in the past was the same as today, so that by calculating the time necessary for the sedimentary formations to form, an absolute scale of time could be obtained. The first illustration of such a scale was given by Charles Lyell. 2 Now in the twentieth century, the absolute ages of sedimentary rocks are evaluated by measuring the radioactive elements in intrusions and in eruptive material. The ages so obtained have been used to show concordance with those from the geological time-scale. However, John Woodmorappe has listed more than 300 absolute radiometric dates that are totally discordant with the geological time-scale. 3
In 1970 my interest in sedimentology was aroused by reading the reports of the Geological Society of America on the underwater drilling campaigns of the American ship Glomar Challenger. It was from these reports that I learned about the works of the German geologist Johannes Walther, 4 who should be considered as one of the principal founders of sedimentology. At the end of the last century, in the Gulf of Naples, he studied the formation of contemporaneous sedimentary deposits which prograded, or developed, from the coast towards the open sea. By drilling into the sediments, he observed the same succession 214 of facies, from the surface downwards, as from the coast towards the sea, The existence of facies, juxtaposed and superposed at the same time in a deposit area, could also be seen during coastal marine floods. Sedimentary rocks also display superposed and juxtaposed facies. The objective of sequence stratigraphy, originating from Walther's observations, is to determine whether a given sequence corresponds to a marine progradation, transgression or regression. The principal proponents of sequence stratigraphy, widely used today, are the Americans, Vail, Van Wagoner and Posamentier. 5 It should be noted that facies in sequences, superposed and juxtaposed at the same time, do not follow the principles of superposition and continuity. In 1970, I also received a report from the American geologist Edwin McKee of his 1965 observations of sediments deposited following a river in Colorado overflowing its banks at Bijou Creek due to 48 hours of torrential rain upriver. 6 The stratified deposits, reaching a thickness of 12 feet, exhibited particle sorting and bedding joints. Such bedding planes are generally interpreted by classical stratigraphy as the result of interruptions in sedimentation followed by hardening of the sedimentary surface of the lower surface of the plane.
The rains having lasted 48 hours, and the supply of sediment being continuous throughout the period, it was impossible to identify the strata in the deposit as successive layers of sediment, with interruptions in sedimentation producing partings. This led me to do some experiments on stratification. The first were in France with limited material, the subsequent ones in the USA at the well- equipped Colorado State University with hydraulically- controlled flowing water transporting sand through flumes. The flume experiments demonstrated the mechanical nature of stratification, whereby: (1) Segregation of particles according to their size, when exposed to a current of variable velocity, gave rise to sorting. (2) Desiccation of deposits caused bedding planes or partings. (3) Under both dry and water conditions, stratification of the deposit formed parallel to the slope of the initial area of deposit which could exceed 30°. This fact invalidates the first part of the principle of superposition as defined. (4) The strata resulting from particle segregation were distinct from sedimentary layers deposited between two consecutive times. The discovery of this fundamentally important distinction provided an entirely new conception of strata formation. (5) Due to the presence of a current, strata were formed vertically and laterally at the same time in the direction of the current (see Figure 1). CEN Tech. J., vol. 12, no. 2, 1998 Figure 1. Schematic formation of graded-beds. The stratified deposits formed in the flume experiments showed that where there was a current, the principles of superposition and continuity did not apply to their formation. Reports of the experiments in France were published by the French Academy of Sciences 7 in 1986 and 1988 respectively, and those in the USA in the Journal of the Geological Society of France 8 in 1993. The reports were translated and published in Ex Nihilo Technical Journal. 911 The flume experiments were repeated in 1993 in a larger flume and filmed for the production of a video entitled Fundamental Experiments in Stratification, which was integrated into the video Drama in the Rocks. 12 This latter video now forms an integral part of the updated version of Evolution, Fact or Belief? 13
In 1994 the Institute for Creation Research produced a book on the Grand Canyon, 14 which included items by geologists Kurt Wise and Steve Austin. The latter contributed an item entitled 'A creationist view of Grand Canyon strata' which made reference to two papers, one by Rubin on the relation between hydraulic conditions and stratified structures in the Bay of San Francisco, 15 and the other by Southard which summarised 39 series of flume experiments on the same relations. 16 Rubin summarised these relations by means of a three- dimensional diagram (see Figure 2). The co-ordinates it features, producing the different depositional structures, are the velocity of current, depth of water and size of sedimentary particles. Having recognised the same structures in the Grand Canyon sedimentary rocks, Steve Austin applied them to the Tonto Group. This formation extends for 800 km from east to west, and corresponds to a transgressive sequence of three facies, superposed and juxtaposed. He determined the hydraulic conditions that existed when the sediments were deposited which gave rise to the rock facies of the Tonto Group. These were principally the velocities of currents of the ocean transgression, which rose to more than 2,000 m above today's ocean level. The maximum velocity was that which corresponded to the initial erosion of the subjacent rocks by the invading marine waters. It was greater than 2 m/s, and might well have reached 22 m/s. With such current velocities, the 800 km margin of the continent could have been submerged by invading ocean water within several days. The velocities decreased as the transgression reached its peak and before the waters started to subside. It should be noted that the velocities are of the same magnitude as those in our flume experiments. Logically, therefore, the strata in the Tonto Group facies probably formed similarly, that is, vertically and laterally in the direction of the current. As the velocity of the current decreased the particles deposited were finer and finer, giving rise to the three superposed and juxtaposed facies of the Tonto Group: sandstone, clay and limestone. The sedimentation was therefore rapid, not only during the marine invasion, but all the time that the ocean stayed at its highest level when there was little or no current. In the absence of a current, the finest particles would have been deposited at a speed of 2 cm/day. As soon as the waters started to subside, the renewed current interrupted the sedimentation of the finer particles. During the marine regression, the inversed currents would have reached CEN Tech. J., vol. 12, no. 2, 1998 Figure 2. Three-dimensional plot of bed phase and sand-wave height as a function of velocity, sediment size, and depth, generalised from bay data and flume data cited in text. 215 Figure 3. The curves for erosion and deposition of a uniform material. velocities sufficient to have eroded deep valleys in the non- consolidated sediments deposited during the transgression. The Tonto Group is attributed to the Cambrian period which, according to the geological time-scale, lasted 70 million years. It can be seen, therefore, to what extent Steve Austin's model, which is founded not upon the Biblical Flood, but on the previously mentioned experimental data, 1516 at least condenses the time required for a major part of the geological time-scale.
Determination of initial hydraulic conditions from sedimentary rock structures, resulting from sediment- ological data is, therefore, a research priority. In this connection, my colleague Pièrre Julien presented a paper in May 1997 to the Third Powders and Grains Conference at Durham, North Carolina, a re-published copy of which follows this paper. The conclusions from our current programme, which is admittedly ambitious, will unfortunately not be available until next year. The experimental work described below is, however, completed. In the report of our stratification experiments, published in the Journal of the French Geological Society, 8 reference was made to Filip Hjulstrom. 17 From his observations of the morphological activity of rivers, he produced the diagram (see Figure 3) where, with regard to the average velocities of currents given in ordinates, and the size of particles in abscissas, the zones of erosion, transport and sedimentation of sedimentary particles are represented. From the size of a sedimentary particle, therefore, the velocities of currents which eroded, transported and deposited sediments can be evaluated. Although the erosion and transport have been carefully measured, the velocities of sedimentation have been estimated empirically by Hjulstrom as two-thirds of the 216 erosion velocities. The object of our new experimental programme is to determine these velocities. Two complementary series of experiments have been carried out in a flume using small glass and steel balls of different sizes. In the first series, a smooth-bottomed flume was traversed by a water current carrying the balls along with it. The velocity of current, corresponding to the deposit of a ball according to its size and density, was noted. In the second series, the movement of a ball in the same flume was studied up to when it stopped. This time the flume was dry and sloped. Its bottom was roughened by particles of calibrated sand, the size of which was changed for each experiment. From the 10,000 pieces of data obtained, a synthesis is being made of the two series of experiments studying the complete movement of a ball (its fall, and its roll on the rough surface of particles previously deposited, up to when it stops). This synthesis, to be completed next year, should enable the formulation of an experimental relationship between velocity of current and size of particle, which will allow for greater precision in determining the hydraulic conditions pertaining when the sediments giving rise to sedimentary rocks were deposited.

In conclusion, regarding the principles of superposition and continuity, it has been shown that: (1) Facies in sequences do not follow each other but are deposited simultaneously, according to sequential stratigraphy initiated by Walther; (2) They do not apply to the resultant stratified deposits formed in the flume experiments when there was a current; and (3) Hjulstrom's observations on fluviatile sedimentation, and submarine observations, such as Rubin's, and Southard's flume experiments, establish the relation between hydraulic conditions (depth, current velocity) and structures (grain diameters) of the deposits. These deposit structures are found in sedimentary rocks. From them, the original hydraulic conditions, and particularly the velocity of the current, can be determined, as Steve Austin did in the Tonto Group. In the absence of a current, the conditions defined by the principles of stratigraphy apply. When there is a transgression, regression or progradation, there is automatically a current and the principles no longer apply. If a principle, having world-wide application, and used as a basis for scientific reasoning, is shown by one experiment not to apply, the principle must be abandoned. This is particularly the case for the principles of stratigraphy upon which the geological time-scale was founded, since they did not take hydraulic conditions into account. The abandonment of principles upon which the geological time-scale is founded, and the recognition of initial hydraulic conditions, are likely to involve important changes in the conception of the scale.
CEN Tech. J., vol. 12, no. 2, 1998
An illustration is the correlation used in the Grand Canyon to correspond the Flood of 370 days with the 460 million years formation of the Cambrian to the Jurassic according to the geological time-scale. This was made possible because the initial diluvial conditions had not been taken into account by the time-scale. The question remains whether with the failure of stratigraphic dating, radiometric dating is a viable method. The CEN Technical Journal recently published a report on the radiometric dating by the potassium/argon method of a dacite sample formed in 1986 when Mt St Helens last erupted. 18 The age obtained was 350,000 years. Part of the sample was subjected to a magnetic separation of the dacite into its constituent parts. The ages obtained were respectively :- 340,000 years for feldspar 900,000 years for amphibole 2,800,000 years for pyroxene The report pointed out that the cause of the dating error was the assumption that the argon measured came from the rock after its crystallisation, whereas the lava, before crystallisation, generally contained excess argon generated by radioactive potassium. This assumption led to the attribution of a very old age to a young rock. The same situation applies to other elements whose radioactivity existed in lavas and magmas from which crystallised rocks came. The fact that radiometric dating methods require stable daughter isotopes does not resolve the problem, because these isotopes often also exist in the lavas and magmas. The liquid lavas being constantly mixed, the parent/daughter relationships in a given volume are not constant. As a result, two samples from the same rock unit can have quite different radioactive ages. This phenomenon challenges the validity of radioactive dating of rocks. Finally, what natural phenomenon could have caused the flood conditions? In January 1996, the Journal of the Natural History Museum in Paris published a study by Christian Marchal, 19 Research Director at ONERA (Office National d'Etudes et de Recherches Aerospatiales). The conclusion of a calculation in mechanics showed that the uplift of the Himalayas brought about a temporary geographical displacement of the axis of the Earth's rotation, the amplitude of which could have reached 30°. Christian Marchal, in fact, evaluated the displacement at between 60° and 90°. The Earth being an ellipsoid, a tilt in such conditions would inevitably have provoked one or more displacements of the oceans which covered the continents. The summary of the data leads to a geological chronology significantly shorter than that proposed by the geological time-scale, and to a different history to the one taught in our schools. In consequence, the feeling of contradiction experienced in my youth no longer exists. The Flood conditions, which undoubtedly existed, buried many species that had been displaced on account of their palaeontological distribution into superposed biozones. The position of the latter in the fossil record led to the disputable belief of a chronological succession of species and, in consequence, the various theories of evolution.
1. Aubouïn, J., Brousse, R. and Lehman, J. P., 1968. Precis de Geologie, Vol. 2, pp. 227.
2. Lyell, G, 1832. Principles of Geology, John Murray, London.
3. Woodmorappe, J., 1979. Radiometric geochronology reappraised. Creation Research Society Quarterly, 16(2): 102-129.
4. Walther, J., 1893-1894. Einleitung in die Geologie als historische Wissenschaft, Iena Verlag von Gustav Fisher, Sud. 1055p.
5. Van Wagoner, J. C, Posamentier, H. W., Mitchum, Jr., R. M., Vail, P. R., Sarg, J. R, Loutit, T. S. and Hardenbol, J., 1988. An Overview of the Fundamentals of Sequence Stratigraphy and Key Definitions, S. C. Kendall.
6. McKee, E., Crosby, E. J. and Berryhill, H. L., 1967. Flood deposits, Bijou Creek, Colorado, 1965, Journal of Sedimentologicai Petrology, 37:829-851.
7. Berthault, G., 1986. C.R. Acad. Sc. Paris, t. 303, Serie II, No. 17 and Serie II, pp. 717-724.
8. Julien, P., Lan, Y. and Berthault, G., 1993. Experiments on stratification of heterogeneous sand mixtures. Bulletin of the Society of Geology, France, 164(5):649-660.
9. Berthault, G., 1988. Experiments on lamination of sediments. EN Tech. J., 3: 25-29.
10. Berthault, G., 1990. Sedimention of a heterogranular mixture: experimental lamination in still and running water. EN Tech. J., 4: 95-102.
11. Julien, P. Y., Lan, Y. and Berthault, G., 1994. Experiments on stratification of heterogeneous sand mixtures. CEN Tech. J., 8(1): 37-50.
12. Drama in the Rocks, video distributed by Answers in Genesis, PO Box 6302, Acacia Ridge DC Qld 4110, Australia.
13. Evolution: Fact or Belief? Video distributed by Answers in Genesis, Australia, USA and UK.
14. Austin, S. A., 1994. Grand Canyon — Monument to Catastrophe, Institute for Creation Research, California.
15. Rubin, D. M. and McCulloch, D. S., 1980. Single and superimposed bedforms: a synthesis of San Francisco Bay and flume observations. Sedimentary Geology, 26:207-231.
16. Boguchwal, J. A. and Southard, J., 1990. Bed configuration in steady unidirectional waterflows, part 2. Synthesis of flume data, Journal of Sedimentary Petrology, 60(5): 658-679.
17. Hjulstrom, F., 1935. The morphological activity of rivers as illustrated by river Fyris, Bulletin of the Geological Institute Uppsala, 25, chapter 3.
18. Austin, S. A, 1996. Excess argon within mineral concentrates from the new dacite lava dome at Mount St Helens volcano. CEN Tech. J., 10(3):335-343.
19. Marchal, C, 1996. Earth's polar displacements of large amplitude: a possible mechanism. Bulletin du Museum National d'Historie Naturelle, Paris, 4em ser. 18, section C. no. 203, pp. 517-554.
Guy Berthault is a graduate of the Ecole Polytechnique, France, and a keen student of geology, particularly the deposition of sediments as a guide to the understanding of structures that we find in sedimentary rocks. He resides at 28 Boulevard Thiers, 78250 Meulan (Paris), France.
CEN Tech. J., vol. 12, no. 2, 1998 217
Mount St Helens— exploding the old-earth paradigm
TJ 18 (1) 2004 46 Book Reviews
Michael Oard
The significance of the Mount St Helens eruptions to catastrophism and Flood geology are explained at a layman’s level in this brilliantly illustrated book. Creationists, indeed all geologists, around the world can learn much from the events, which began on 18 May 1980, at this now- famous mountain. And thanks to the detailed investigations carried out by many scientists, the recent geological and geomorphological events at Mount St Helens can provide insightful analogs for past earth-shaping events, which are evident in the rocks and fossils. These analogies defy the principle of uniformitarianism—the guiding light for mainstream geological interpretation—and have fuelled the ideas of the neo-catastrophists, who have brought back catastrophism into secular geological thinking (although not on the scale of the Genesis Flood). Creationists can use neo-catastrophic ideas and research about the eruptions of Mount St Helens to better understand Flood and post-Flood catastrophic processes.
Catastrophic analogs
Rapid deposition is clearly evident from the historical record at Mount St Helens. During the initial and subsequence eruptions, about 180 m of stratified sediment were rapidly laid A review of Footprints in the Ash: the explosive story of Mount St Helens by John Morris and Steven A. Austin Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2003 down by dynamic processes (air blast, landslide, lake waves, pyroclastic flows, mudflows, air fall and stream water). These sediments contain dead plants and animals, some of which are now fossilizing. Cross-bedded and graded strata were formed rapidly and some of the strata were sufficiently lithified (within five years) to stand at near vertical slopes. Clastic dikes, which also indicate rapid deposition—to allow for soft sediment intrusion—were noted at several locations. A pyroclastic flow, moving at 150 kph, deposited thousands of finely laminated layers in a few hours. Without the documented history, uniformitarian geologists would consider these strata to have taken long periods of time to form. For example, as the mode of sediment transport (pyroclastic or water lain) is often indistinguishable, couplets of such laminated layers would normally be considered varves, each thought to have formed during one year. But Mount St Helens demonstrated that layered sediment can form catastrophically within hours. The events at Mount St Helens also show that many landforms can form quickly by catastrophic action. A 30-metre deep canyon (Lower Loowit Canyon) was cut in hard basalt as rock avalanched from the crater. Grooves and striations were formed on solid bedrock by avalanche and ‘blast clouds’ that tore loose boulders and dragged them with great force across the exposed rock. (Such grooves and striations— found all over the earth—are normally interpreted to be the result of an ancient glaciation.) Craters were formed as steam exploded from superheated ice, which had been buried by hot sediments. Subsequent sloughing of sediments into these ‘explosion pits’ resulted in the rapid formation of badlands topography. Normally such topography would be interpreted as being formed by slow erosion over hundreds of thousands of years. Of great interest is the 19 March 1982 mudflow, which produced a 43- meter deep canyon in one day. This canyon is a one-fortieth scale model of the Grand Canyon of Arizona. After seeing this happen, we can now easily envision how large canyons could have been formed rapidly at the end of Noah’s Flood.
Spirit Lake
An extremely energetic wave in Spirit Lake, north of the volcano, sloshed 260 m up the side of the adjacent mountain, with the return flow dumping one million trees into the lake. As these floating trees rubbed against each other, bark was dislodged and sunk to the bottom of the lake. Such bark, covered over with sediments, mimics a layer of peat that can turn into a coal seam, with subsequent sedimentation and time. This is a modern example of the creationist log mat model for the formation of coal. Many of the trees in Spirit Lake have sunk into a vertical position, at different levels on the lake bottom. One can imagine, if Spirit Lake filled with sediments and was subsequently eroded, we would see many levels of vertical trees. These could easily be interpreted as multiple fossil forests that formed over tens of thousands of years. But they are not forests and they formed quickly. This amazing process provides insights into how the famous multiple levels of fossil trees found in vertical positions at Yellowstone National Park and at Joggins, Nova Scotia, also formed quickly. Although Mount St Helens has continued to show signs of activity, the landform has remained fairly stable since 1982. In the post-catastrophic period, vegetation and animals have returned rapidly to the surrounding area. This recolonization provides us with useful clues to understanding the rapid repopulating of the earth after the devastation of the Genesis Flood.
Radiometric dating
Mount St Helens also provided an opportunity to check radiometric dating methods. Samples of newly formed rock from the lava dome within the crater were dated up to 2.4 million years old by the K-Ar method, which is supposed to register the time since solidification of the lava. This is contrary to the known history of the lava cooling between 1980 and 1986. Such old dates for recent lava flows have been documented numerous times. Something is certainly wrong with the old ages derived from the radiometric dating methods. Conclusion Mount St Helens adds up to a real- life laboratory to understand a number of processes that occurred on a much larger scale, during Noah’s Flood. At Mount St Helens, these processes were observed to rapidly form a wide range of geological features, in contrast to the thousands to millions of years assumed by mainstream scientists. Mount St Helens demonstrates that when we bring the Flood back into our thinking, a large percentage of the uniformitarian time challenges melt away. This book wonderfully illustrates the many catastrophic events, which occurred at Mount St Helens, which can be used to improve our thinking about the catastrophic events that occurred during the Flood.
Sedimentation Experiments: Is Extrapolation Appropriate? A Reply
'As with biotopes, it is a basic statement of far-reaching significance, that only those facies and facies-areas can be superimposed primarily which can be observed beside each other at the present time.' The law applies to progradation of sediments, transgressions and regressions. The video gives illustrations of the application of these movements to both coastal sediments and deep sea sediments. The latter accords with the published data from the 'Glomar Challenger' drilling programme. (3) Visualisation of our experiments in France and in the United States. These include the flume experiments, showing superposed strata depositing at the same time, which confirm Walther's Law. (4) My own comments, in which I emphasise that our experiments invalidate the basis of the geological time- scale. Some of my remarks are based upon sequence stratigraphy, and not on the results of our experiments, although the latter have an indirect application. It should be noted that the experiments liberate sequence stratigraphy from the limits of bedding plane partings. The latter need no longer be considered as chronological markers, arising simply from sedimentary hiatuses. It is shown that they can arise by desiccation subsequent to the deposit, and therefore have no chronological significance. I would refer Hoskin, who makes no comment on sequence stratigraphy, to the paper on that topic by Froede. 24 Considering the possibility that the sedimentation giving rise to sedimentary rocks could have resulted from successive tidal waves moving across the oceans, as I suggested in Drama in the Rocks, does not seem to me incompatible with the Noahic Flood. The recognition by Steve Austin of lateral currents of 90 to 15 cm/s at the time of formation of cross- beds in the Grand Canyon lends some support to the hypothesis. The determination of initial hydraulic conditions from the stratification of rocks, in association with sequence stratigraphy, should, I think, shed light upon the problem of compatibility of the Noahic Flood with the new stratigraphy.

Once again Hoskin uses his own interpretation of the mechanism of non-horizontal layers to see if it can account for the stratification of the Grand Canyon. He thinks not, and asks whether in fact 'sedimentation would not operate many times on small packages of sediments'. The response to this dilemma does not come directly from our experiments, but rather more from sequence stratigraphy. Knowing that a transgressive series 68 corresponds from bottom to top to a superposition, such as sandstone-siltstone-shale-limestone, and the reverse position for a regressive series, an analysis of the geologic block diagram of the Grand Canyon 25 starting from Tapeats can be made. First, a marine transgression from Tapeats to Redwall, followed by a regression from Redwall to Supai. Then comes a transgressive-regressive cycle from Supai to Coconino, followed by a final transgression prior to the waters retreating. McKee 26 made an interesting study of the Supai Group to determine the directions of the currents corresponding to these transgressions and regressions. The transgressive and regressive series follow Walther's Law. The direction of the current, and to some extent its speed, can be ascertained from the slope of the cross- stratification in the sandstones (Tapeats, Supai, Coconino). This speed is highly variable and determines the sizes of the deposited particles. Graded-beds are created in these conditions, with the sediments depositing upward and downstream. The Figure 2 is a diagram by Vincent 27 of a marine transgression. When the ocean is at A, the sedimentary layer deposited is a; when at B, b; when at C, c. In a vertical direction from A, the deposit of pebbles, sandstone and marl superpose when the ocean level is at C. But when the ocean level is at C, the pebbles deposit at C, the sandstone at B, the marl at A. Figure 2. Diagram of a marine transgression showing the sequential deposition of the various facies. The diagram illustrates Walther's Law of Facies: pebbles, sandstone and marl are seen to be superposed and juxtaposed in the area of the deposit. It is in this way, therefore, on the scale of facies, that stratification in the Grand Canyon has to be interpreted. (2) and (3) Hoskin mentions the case of juxtaposed rocks having different stages of oxidation and different cements. This seems to be a question of chemical action having taken place subsequent to sedimentation, which would accord with Walther's Law. (4) Hoskin then refers to evaporitic salts. Again I would refer him to Walther's Law. These salts occur in shallow waters which arise in the final stage of a transgressive series, or the first stage of a succeeding regressive series, following Walther's Law. (5) I have read the report of the Boguchwal and Southard experiments showing the incidence of temperature on CEN Tech. J., vol. 11, no. 1, 1997 the conditions of sedimentation. 28 In our experiments we did not vary the temperature, although I agree that it could have had some effect. It would not, however, have fundamentally altered the results obtained. (6) Hoskinasks, 'Why are the majority of graptolite fossils found on desiccation cracks and not disseminated throughout the sediment itself?' Aubouin 29 specifies that graptolites are mainly found in schists, which under tectonic strain produce an axial- plane foliation which coincides with the bedding planes. Thus, joints in schists would result from mechanical action of strain rather than from desiccation. Why graptolite fossils are found in these joints or cracks remains to be explained. I don't know. Hoskin's two final questions can be summarised as follows: why, if bedding plane partings result from desiccation, do they occur in the middle of large uniform deposits? The same question can, of course, be asked regarding vertical cracks found in sandstone and limestone. I have never said that desiccation is the only factor creating bedding plane partings. But the postulate of stratigraphy that these partings are sedimentary hiatuses has been shown by my experiments to not necessarily apply. Desiccation has been shown experimentally to be a factor. In my view it is wiser to rely on observable repeatable experiments than on interpretations unsupported by facts.
Our experiments have invalidated the identification of superposed rock strata with successive sedimentary layers. Consequently, the experiments invalidate the principles of superposition and continuity upon which the geological time-scale was founded. They shed light upon the mechanism of stratification. Our laboratory work contributes to discoveries in sedimentology in the domain of observation and experimentation. Our new series of experiments currently taking place, has as its objective for 1997-1998 the development of an understanding of sedimentary mechanics. Despite what is said to the contrary, 'the present is the key to the past' if contemporary sedimentary mechanisms can be used to explain those which created the sedimentary rocks. The first contribution to sedimentology came from Johannes Walther, whose observations of contemporary sedimentation led to sequence stratigraphy and the recognition of transgressive and regressive series. Our flume experiments demonstrate that Walther's Law, which applies to facies series, also applies to the internal strata of facies. The experiments have also shown that bedding plane partings are not necessarily sedimentary hiatuses, but could be due to desiccation. In which case, it would mean that there would be no discontinuity between superposed sequences. These facies series have up until now only been studied CEN Tech. J., vol. 11, no. 1, 1997 locally. No account has been taken of their relationship with each other. A marine transgression or regression, however, should be recognisable throughout its extent wherever it deposited its sediments. This is why observations, such as those of Rubin and McCulloch, and those in our flume experiments, ascertaining the relations between hydraulic conditions and stratification are so important. It is from them that the stratification of rocks can, within certain limits, determine the initial hydraulic conditions at depth, and the speed and direction of transgressive and regressive currents. With the aid of sequence stratigraphy, the entire extent of these transgressions and regressions can be reconstituted, as well as their succession in time. Taken together, all of this provides a more exact view of the history of geological time. When, therefore, in the video I spoke of successive tidal waves, it was certainly in anticipation of the results of this reconstitution. This anticipation, however, which is coherent with the results already known that I have recapitulated above, does not, in my opinion, merit the term 'extrapolation'. Regarding the Noahic Flood, might not these successive tidal waves result from 'the fountains of the deep'?
1. Hoskin, W., 1997. Sedimentation experiments: is extrapolation appropriate? CENTech. J., 11(1):
2. Berthault, G., 1986. Experiments on lamination of sediments. Compte Rendus Académie des Sciences Paris, t.303, Série II, no. 17:1569- 1574; and EN Tech. J., 3:25-29(1988).
3. Berthault, G., 1988. Sedimentation of a heterogranular mixture: experimental lamination in still and running water. Compte Rendus Acadéinie des Sciences Paris, t. 306, Série 11:717-724; and EN Tech. J., 4:95-102 (1990).
4. Julien, P. Y., Lan,Y. and Berthault, G., 1993. Experiments on stratification of heterogeneous sand mixtures. Bulletin of the Geological Society of France, 164(5):649-660; and CEN Tech. J., 8(l):37-50 (1994).
5. Berthault, G., 1995. Drama in the Rocks. Video, Creation Science Foundation Ltd, Australia.
6. Julien, P. Y. and Berthault, G., 1994. Fundamental Experiments on Stratification. Video, Sarong Ltd, Monaco.
7. Julien et al., Ref. 4, p. 37.
8. Berthault, Ref. 2.
9. Berthault, Ref. 3.
10. Julien et al., Ref. 4.
11. Julien et al., Ref. 4, p. 37.
12. Berthault, Ref. 3.
13. Julien and Berthault, Ref. 6.
14. Southard, J. B. and Boguchwal, L. A., 1980. Bed configurations in steady unidirectional water flows. Part 2. Synthesis of flume data. Journal of Sedimentary Petrology, 60(5):658-679 (Table I).
15. Berthault, Ref. 3, p. 100.
16. Rubin, D. and McCulloch, D. S., 1980. Single and superposed bedforms: a synthesis of San Francisco Bay and flume observations. Sedimentary Petrology, 26:207-231.
17. Austin, S., 1994. Interpreting strata of Grand Canyon. In: Grand Canyon: Monument to Catastrophe, Institute for Creation Research, San Diego, California, pp. 21-51.
18. Rubin and McCulloch, Ref. 16, p. 207.
19. Walther, J., 1893-1894. Enleitung in die Geologie als historische Wissenschaft, Iena Verlag von Gustav Fisher, three volumes, 1055p. 69
20. Walther, J., 1910. Die Sedimente des Taubenbank in Golf von Neapel, Berlin-Akad. Wiss Abh könig — press, 49p.
21. Walther, Ref. 19.
22. Walther, Ref. 20.
23. Middleton, G., 1973. Johannes Walther's law in the correlation of facies. Geological Society of America Bulletin, 84:979-988.
24. Froede, C. R. Jr., 1994. Sequence stratigraphy and creation geology. Creation Research Society Quarterly, 31: 138-144.
25. Austin, Ref. 17.
26. McKee, E. D., 1979. Characteristics of the Supai Group in Grand Canyon, Arizona. In: Carboniferous Stratigraphy in the Grand Canyon Country, Northern Arizona and Southern Nevada, S. S. Beus and R. R. Rawson (eds), American Geological Institute, Fall Church, Virginia, pp. 110-112.
27. Vincent, P., 1962. Sciences Naturelles, Vuibert
28. Boguchwal, L. A. and Southard, J. B., 1990. Bed configurations in steady unidirectional water flows. Part 1. Scale model study using fine sand. Journal of Sedimentary Petrology, 60:649-657.
29. Aubouin, J., 1967. Précis de Géologic, Dunod, Tome I, p. 413; Tome II, p. 130.
The mountains rose
A review of The Origin of Mountains Edited by Cliff Ollier and Colin Pain Routlege, London 2000 TJ 16 (3) 2002 41
Book Reviews
Michael J. Oard
This is a book with a controversial message on the origin of mountains— controversial that is to uniformitarian geologists. Cliff Ollier and Colin Pain are well known geomorphologists from Australia who apply geomorphology, the study of the origin and development of the Earth’s surface features, to Earth science problems. Their decades of international experience give them insights into the origin of mountains that are valuable to creationists attempting to model the details of the Genesis Flood.
Strata first folded
Many geologists and geophysicists assume that the mountain building process of horizontal compression caused the folds we see in the mountains today. But the authors state: ‘There is no direct evidence that folding was accompanied by mountain building’ (pp. 274–275). The main reason for this radical deduction is ‘the certain knowledge that the strength of rocks is insufficient to permit folds to be created by lateral compression’ (p. 275). The authors believe that most folds, as well as thrusts, were caused when huge masses of rock slid down slope under the influence of gravity, an idea denied by most geologists today. To back up their contention, they provide some impressive modern analogues from the continental slope and rise, including the huge Agulhas Slump off southeast Africa, the distal Bengal Fan, and the Niger Delta. Tensional and compressional structures, similar to those found in mountains, have formed in these areas during downslope mass movement. Seismic sections of ancient folded sediments from all over the world, especially along convergent plate margins, look similar to these modern marine sediments found along the continental margins. It is my opinion that another mechanism for folding also is valid, and that is differential vertical tectonics, as propounded by S. Warren Carey. 1 For example, there are quite a number of anticlines in Montana and other areas of the Rocky Mountains of North America that are cored by granitic rocks. 2 The sedimentary rocks form drapes over these plutonic cores. Although it is generally believed such basement-cored anticlines were produced by horizontal compression, it is easier to believe they were produced by upward vertical tectonics, especially since mid and upper crustal rocks are likely to fail upon compression and not produce folds.
Strata next planed worldwide in about the Miocene of the geological time scale
Ollier and Pain show that after the strata were folded by these tectonic events, they were planed down to form flat surfaces, called planation surfaces, on all the continents, including Antarctica (p. 214). This global planation process cut across previously folded sedimentary rocks and smoothed both the hard and soft rocks evenly. Even massive granite was planed over many areas, as in the Tien Shan Mountains of central Asia (p. 144). Planation is assumed to have occurred subaerially by the kinds of erosional processes that we observe today on the continents. The surfaces were planed down to what is called base level, which is usually considered to have been sea level (p. 3). It is interesting that one planed area, the area that is now occupied by the Apennines Mountains of Italy, was planed below sea level (p. 72)! In some areas the planation surfaces are very flat, such as the plains of Australia and Africa (p. 1). Below these plains the sedimentary rocks are generally folded. Ollier and Pain marvel how such planation could have occurred at all and that is was so widespread: ‘The remarkable thing is that plains of great perfection are ever made, despite all the obvious possibilities of complications. But they are real, and planation surfaces were widespread before the uplift of the many mountains of Plio-Pleistocene age’ (p. 302). They are surprised, of course, because the observed surfaces are inconsistent with their uniformitarian worldview. Erosional processes today do not produce the flat landscapes that were produced in the past. Present processes roughen surfaces, forming rills, coulees and valleys. Today, we observe that previously-planed surfaces are dissected. Planed surfaces do not develop today, except on a very local scale when perhaps a river suddenly shifts its course and moves across tilted sedimentary rock.
Furthermore, the field relationships show that planation in the past mostly occurred in the Late Miocene-Early Pliocene period (p. 302), suggesting that it occurred rapidly : ‘There is nothing very special about the climate in the Late Miocene-Early Pliocene period when there often occurred planation that suggests an increased erosion rate, and in any case the mountains discussed are in a wide range of latitudinal and climatic situations. At present, the cause of the observed high rate of planation remains a mystery.’ Of course, their concept of climate in the Late Miocene-Early Pliocene is based on uniformitarian assumptions, which ignores the effects of the Genesis Flood. A further mystery is that, within the uniformitarian time scale, some planation surfaces are very old, such as the planation surface of the Kimberly Plateau of north central Australia that was planed in the Proterozoic and has apparently not been covered by protecting sediments since then (p. 27). It defies imagination how such a surface could have remained so flat for 600 million years or more, when present processes could dissect a continent and erode it to near sea level in 10 to 33 million years. The presence of such ‘old’ planation surfaces is objective evidence that the dating methods, both fossil and radiomentic, used to date the time of planation are wrong. 3
Mountains uplifted globally in Plio-Pleistocene
Ollier and Pain show that after all the continents were planed, they were uplifted and dissected. The authors essentially conclude that the plains that were once near sea level in the Miocene were uplifted to form the mountains we see today. They believe this is the origin of nearly all mountains and have an impressive amount of evidence to back up their conclusion. In the mountains today we observe all stages of this past dissection. Some planation surfaces were dissected completely during uplift, leaving behind rough mountains with no sign of a planation surface. In other mountains, the planation surface is left on the top as an erosional remnant. Sometimes these planation surfaces are at different altitudes in the mountains due to differential uplift. The evidence for these planation surface remnants is readily observable, even to the untrained eye (pp. 128–130). The highest mountains in Montana, the Beartooth Mountains, are an excellent example of this. They display impressive flat topped granitic peaks at a height of about 4,000 m. 4 The most controversial aspect of the authors’ geomorphological deductions is their contention that practically all the uplift occurred in the Pliocene and Pleistocene, the last two epochs of geological time! The huge Andes Mountains (p. 127) are but one example. Another is the Tibetan Plateau, which is considered to be one vast erosion surface that uplifted in the Pliocene-Pleistocene (pp. 128–129, 137–138). Furthermore they present an impressive table of mountains from all over the world that uplifted during this time frame (pp. 304–306). As the mountains uplifted, the authors point out that some of them spread laterally, thrusting rocks over the surrounding lowlands (p. 12). Another name for this spreading is ‘mushroom tectonics’. This would account for all the thrust faults, if indeed they are real, that we often find at the edge of uplifts. It is also likely that granite mountains were uplifted when the granite was already solid (pp. 184–185). Do the authors, or anybody else, know the cause of such recent vertical tectonics? Does the lack of a mechanism nullify the authors’ field deductions? The answer is no. They provide a list of 20 possible mechanisms for vertical tectonics, none of which can be demonstrated to be occurring today (p. 308). One strong contender is isostasy after erosion, but the authors find much evidence against this suggested mechanism: ‘But most other mountains and plateaus tend to have very distinct edges, suggesting uplift of distinct blocks, and to raise such blocks by isostasy alone seems improbable’ (p. 286).
Plate tectonics explains very few mountains
One of their conclusions is quite controversial, namely that plate tectonics explains very few mountains. Plate tectonics has a difficult time explaining mountains on passive plate margins and even on some spreading sites without the need to incorporate secondary, ad hoc , assumptions into its paradigm (p. 14). Even mountains within plates, such as the Ruwenzori Mountains of Africa (p. 53) and the Ouachita Mountains in the central United States (p. 109), are difficult to explain. They summarize: ‘A great many mountains, plateaus and other landscape features have no apparent relationship to plate tectonics situations’ (p. 297). They are skeptical of the plate tectonic idea for the formation of isostatically balanced mountains by what is called crustal thickening: ‘We do not equate either mountain building or orogeny with crustal thickening, and suspect that few

The Andes mountains in Peru. The authors contend that the huge Andes Mountains uplifted in the Pliocene-Pleistocene. TJ 16 (3) 2002 42 Book Reviews

other workers do so’ (p. 6). Ollier and Pain also assert that plate tectonics has ignored planation and its implications, especially the timing right before the Pliocene. A good example of this is the Alps (p. 63) and the Central Cordillera of Spain (p. 85). The authors attribute the formation of rifts, such as the East African rift (p. 49), to fairly recent vertical tectonics. They even state that the East African rift can be traced to the Carlsberg Mid Ocean Ridge in the Indian Ocean: ‘As noted in a previous section, the formation of swells seems to initiate faulting, rifting and extension, and it is interesting that the rift valley system of Africa can be traced continuously to the Red Sea, and thence to the Carlsberg sub-oceanic ridge’ (p. 52). By this they are implying that vertical tectonics also produced the mid-ocean ridges in the last periods of geological time. Although the authors provide a list of 17 significant problems with plate tectonics (pp. 298–300), they maintain that they still believe in the paradigm: ‘There is overwhelming evidence that the Atlantic Ocean has been formed by the drifting apart of the continents that bound it ... We should make it clear that we have no objection to plate tectonics in general, for it explains many things. But we do object to the simplistic explanation of mountains and their distribution’ (pp. 13, 272). They simply suggest that there are additional processes acting besides plate tectonics (p. 300). It is possible that the concept of catastrophic plate tectonics occurring during the Genesis Flood can explain some of the problems the authors have raised with uniformitarian plate tectonics.
Philosophy lessons in science
As a result of the authors’ long experience, involving somewhat controversial ideas, they have learned a number of important lessons in the philosophy of science to which we creationists can certainly relate. They mention how they have observed that ruling paradigms do not tolerate other explanations, even if the originators of these explanations still believe in the paradigm. Ruling paradigms tend to censor anyone who dares to disagree, even a little: ‘Another problem arises from orthodoxy. Anyone who disagrees with the ruling theory is regarded as an ignorant fool by the majority, and authoritarian orthodoxy even goes so far as the suppression of publications that do not fit the orthodox scenario (nowadays plate tectonics) ...’ (p. 314) [parentheses theirs]. First, the authors have had their own work rejected by referees because it was not couched within the language of the paradigm (p. 301). Such pressure to conform also causes researchers to blindly fall in line, like solders on the march. Second, they complain that most data from geomorphology, as well as some from geology and geophysics, is omitted or suppressed ‘in favour of the grandiose tectonic picture’ (p. 123): ‘The latest obstacle to the flow of reason is an increasing disregard for ground truth, or what used to be called field evidence’ (p. 315). They predict that in the study of mountains geomorphology will continue to be ignored (p. 310). This is part of the ruling paradigm error, they say: ‘One of the greatest, and commonest, errors in the history of science is the fallacy of single cause’ (pp. 313–314). Third, in their opinion Earth science has become too concerned with theory, models, and dogma (p. xvii): ‘Indeed, the dead weight of orthodoxy and the preference for models over ground truth that prevails today suggest that we have less reason for optimism, not more’ (p. 312). Fourth, most scientists jump too quickly for an ultimate mechanism with too little data. The authors suggest that a better methodology would be patience to wait for the mechanism to unfold: ‘If we first get the geometry right, then in time, we might work out the kinematics, and if we know that we might, just possibly, venture on the driving force’ (p. 314). To me, this seems a sensible way of finding ultimate causes for the rocks and fossils.
Authors’ field deductions fit well into the Recessive Stage of the Flood
The authors radical field deductions of folding of strata, of worldwide planation before the mid Pliocene, then uplift and dissection of the planation surfaces, fits in neatly within the Flood model, especially the Recessive Stage of the Flood. 5 – 7 The folding of strata can occur mostly during the Inundatory Stage due to rapid sedimentation and tectonics in which huge masses of consolidated to partly consolidated strata slide downslope. It is interesting that the authors find analogs for folded strata from mass movement along the continental margin. In other words, the folds we now see in ancient rocks on the continents likely happened underwater . And, as a bonus for creationists, the authors suggest an origin for the vast amount of carbonate rocks found in the strata: ‘Many lavas are very rich in alkalis, sodium and potassium, and some are rich in carbonate including the remarkable Oldoinyo Lengai in Kenya. Carbonatite is a volcanic rock consisting largely of igneous calcite and suggests vast accumulation of carbonate at the base of the crust’ (p. 180). I know that some creationists have proposed that carbonates were erupted during the ‘fountains of the great deep’ or other tectonic activity. A vast accumulation of carbonates at the base of the crust would not only be radical from a uniformitarian standpoint, but also provide a source for the large volume of carbonates in the sedimentary record. When the water peaked around Day 150, powerful water currents would likely have planed the continental strata, which would have been in relatively shallow water due to recent deposition. These powerful currents would have been caused by a number of mechanisms, including the spin of the Earth acting on huge continents, more than 2,500 km in extent, submerged less than 1,000 m below the sea surface. 8 The beginning of uplift during the Abative Phase would also add a component of flow from the center of rising sediments. With time, that flow would predominate and produce more planation. The authors state that the planation was marine in the Apennines of Italy (p. 72), which is strongly contrary to the prevailing wisdom of subaerial erosion. They also state that most strata, when deposited on a planation surface or in a valley cut on that surface, are marine . These observations were once interpreted as marine planation by a transgressing shoreline, an idea popular in the 19 th century (p. 234). The planation is also supposed to have been rapid, within the uniformitarian system of course. This data hints strongly that maybe all planations occurred rapidly underwater, readily fitting in with the Genesis Flood. Ollier and Pain hint at the radical possibility that granitic rocks were solid when planed and uplifted. This is a deduction that I am entertaining. An indication that uplifted granite masses were solid, and probably never molten, is the existence of planation surface remnants at the tops of many granitic mountains. 4 , 9 In order to be planed during the Flood before the great uplift of the Recessive Stage of the Flood, it is reasonable that these huge granitic masses would have been solid, or at least rigid, before planation. The origin of mountains by great uplift and dissection of the planed strata and granitic bodies is strong support for the Recessive Stage of the Flood. Dissection of the planed surfaces would be explained by a combination of strong currents becoming more channelized and flow becoming predominantly downslope towards the sinking ocean basins as the uplift progressed. 10 It is especially significant that this great mountain uplift from below or near sea level is in the last periods of geological time, dated automatically into the Pliocene and Pleistocene of the uniformitarian time scale. In other words, this great worldwide uplift is the last great geological, tectonic event to have occurred on the Earth (not counting the Ice Age), and it occurred rapidly . The authors admit that such deductions, the results of dozens of years of field observations, are not in accord with the principle of uniformitarianism, which requires geological processes to have occurred continuously through geologic time. The dogma of uniformitarianism, or modifications of it, have dominated geological theory for over 200 years: ‘Uplift occurred over a relatively short and distinct time. Some Earth process switched on and created mountains after a period with little or no significant uplift [to produce the planation]. This is a deviation from uniformitarianism ... . We are seeing the results of a distinct and remarkably young mountain building period. This is a deviation from strict uniformitarianism’ (pp. 303, 306). What powerful support for the Flood, especially the Recessive Stage, these authors have unwittingly provided with their understanding of the origins of mountains.

1. Carey, S.W., Theories of the Earth and Universe—A History of Dogma in the Earth Sciences , Stanford University Press, Stanford, pp. 217–224, 1988. 2. Schmidt, C.J., Chase, R.B. and Erslev, E.A. (Eds), Laramide Basement Deformation in the Rocky Mountain Foreland of the Western United States, Geological Society of America Special Paper 280 , 1993. 3. Oard, M.J., Antiquity of landforms: objective evidence that dating methods are wrong, CEN Tech. J 14 (1):35–39, 2000. 4. Oard, Ref. 3, Figure 1, p. 36. 5. Walker, T., A Biblical geological model; in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism , Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, pp. 581–592, 1994. 6. Oard, M.J., Vertical tectonics and the drainage of Flood water: a model for the middle and late diluvian period—Part I, CRSQ 38 (1): 3–17, 2001. 7. Oard, M.J., Vertical tectonics and the drainage of Flood water: a model for the middle and late diluvial period—Part II, CRSQ 38 (2):79–95, 2001. 8. Barnette, D.W. and Baumgardner, J.R., Patterns of ocean circulation over the continents during Noah’s Flood in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism , Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, pp. 77–86, 1994. 9. Oard, Ref. 6, Figure 14–16, pp. 13–14. 10. Oard, Ref. 6, Figure 3, p. 9.
2. Event/Era Stage Duration Phase New-World 4000 years Modern 300 years Residual Flood Recessive 100 days Dispersive 200 days Abative 30 days Zenithic Inundatory 20 days Ascending 10 days Eruptive Lost-World 1700 years Lost-World Creation Formative 2 days Biotic 2 days Derivative Foundational 2 days Ensuing 0 days Original The Biblical geological model as proposed by Tas Walker. Mountain building may have occured during the Recessive Stage of the Flood.

The geological column is a general Flood order with many exceptions Michael J. Oard
Adapted from: Oard, M., The geological column is a general flood order with many exceptions
in: Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J. (Eds.), The Geologic Column: Perspectives Within Diluvial Geology , Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, ch. 7, pp. 99–119, 2006; with permission from the Creation Research Society.
There is a degree of controversy in creationist circles about the relationship between the evolutionary geological column and Flood geology. Some creationists hold that the geological column represents the exact sequence of deposition during the Flood as well as the post-Flood period. The only change needed is to shorten the uniformitarian timescale. Other creationists want to throw out the entire geological column. Still others believe that it is a general sequence with many exceptions. In a previous paper, 1 I addressed the question of whether the geological column was indeed a global sequence. I showed that local stratigraphic sections seem to line up with the general order of the geological column at hundreds of locations around the world. But there are many problems with the details. One obvious problem is that the geological column is a vertical or stratigraphic representation that has been abstracted from rock units that are mainly found laterally adjacent to each other in the field. In addition, new fossil discoveries continue to expand the fossil stratigraphic ranges on which global correlations are based. These problems are compounded by the methods that geologists have used to try to incorporate the fossil evidence into their uniformitarian paradigm. These methods include giving different names to the same or a similar organism when found in ‘different-aged’ strata. In addition, there are various techniques for handling fossils that are found in anomalous locations and fossils that are found out of order. These problems mean that creationist geologists should be cautious about accepting the geological column as it stands and relating it directly to the Flood. I advocate viewing the rocks and fossils through ‘Flood glasses’— through the actual mechanism that produced the rocks and fossils, the Genesis Flood. Why look at the rocks and fossils through a false philosophical system based on the hypotheses of uniformitarianism, an old earth, evolution, and naturalism? By using a geological Flood model we can independently evaluate how valid the geological column is to Flood geology. Since I believe that the geological column is a general sequence of the Flood, I expect to find some overlap between a Flood classification and the geological column. I advocate the model or classification of Walker, 2 which is similar to the model derived by Whitcomb and Morris in The Genesis Flood. 3 Although Froede produced a similar model, 4 I prefer Walker’s model mainly because it is more developed with defining criteria for his stages and phases. Klevberg modified Walker’s timescale for the stages to correspond with the Flood peaking on Day 150, 5 which seems to be the Scriptural position and also corresponds to the 21 weeks of prevailing and the 31 weeks of assuaging in the Whitcomb-Morris model. By working in this way I have found that the geological column is a general Flood sequence but with many exceptions. Does the geological column represent the Flood depositional sequence ? In examining fossils and fossil successions with regard to the Flood, we must distinguish between animals that survived the Flood and those that did not. This distinction will help determine whether a fossil was buried by the Flood or is post-Flood. The animals that God brought onboard the Ark were a male and female of each unclean kind and seven of each clean kind. These animals had to be terrestrial and breath air (Genesis 7:21, 22). The Genesis kind cannot be equated with modern species in many cases. 6 If the kind is at the genus level, the ark needed only 16,000 animals, 7 primarily mammals, birds, and reptiles. Many other organisms could have survived the Flood outside the Ark. Therefore, all mammals, reptiles (including dinosaurs), and likely all birds had to be dead by the time the water started retreating

Whether the geological column represents an exact sequence of Flood events or not can be resolved by applying a geological model that is based on biblical presuppositions. Walker ’ s model is ideally suited to analyzing the rock record because it is based on the true mechanism for the deposition of the strata and incorporates logical stages and phases that can be identified in the field. Comparing Walker’ s model to the geological column reveals several surprises. First, sedimentary rocks labeled Precambrian (if from the Flood), Paleozoic, and Mesozoic strata are early Flood. Second, Cenozoic strata can be early Flood, late Flood, or post-Flood depending upon the location and the particular fossil used to define the Cenozoic. Third, Flood deposition is highly nonlinear with a large percentage of strata deposited early in the Flood. This means the geological column is a general order of Flood deposition but highly nonlinear and with many exceptions.

off the land around Day 150 (Genesis 7:22–8:3). So, evidence of a live mammal or reptile would indicate either an early Flood or post-Flood time. Marine organisms, such as foraminifers, could potentially represent early Flood, late Flood, or post Flood.
1) Walker ’ s model
To bypass all the confusion with the geological column, I advocate Walker’s model of the Flood (figure 1). 2 Viewing the strata through flawed uniformitarian concepts does not seem logical. So, we need to put on our ‘Flood glasses’ when looking at the rocks and fossils. Walker’s model was derived directly from the Bible, seperate from the geological column or any other philosophical presupposition. It also provides a template for examining how the geological column relates to the Flood. When Walker’s model is applied it is at odds with even the relative dating of the column. For example, Walker classified the basement rocks around the Brisbane area as being from the Eruptive Phase of the Inundatory Stage of the Flood— its very beginning, even though these rocks are generally dated as middle Paleozoic in the geological column. 8 Walker then assigned the shale and sandstone deposits of the Great Artesian Basin to the upper Zenithic Phase of the Inundatory Stage (just before the Floodwater peaked). 9 The strata of this basin cover an area of 1,800,000 km 2 and are over 2,000 m in thickness. They are dated as mostly Jurassic and Cretaceous in the geological column, but represent the first half of the Flood. Thus, in eastern Australia, the Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata are early Flood.
2) Precambrian to Mesozoic strata in the Rocky Mountains
In the Rocky Mountain region of the United States, Precambrian sedimentary rocks commonly outcrop in mountain ranges and their thickness indicates that they
Figure 1. Walker ’ s biblical geological model, modified by Klevberg . Postdiluvial Era (4,300 years) Time-Scale Rock-Scale Postdiluvial Era 4,000 years DURATION STAGE EVENT/ERA PHASE ∼ 300 years
Modern Residual Zenethic Ascending Eruptive 40 days Dispersive Abative Antediluvian Era 1,700 years
Antediluvial Biotic 2 days 2 days Derivative 2 days Ensuing 0 days Primordial Inundatory Recessive ca. 220 days ca. 110 days Formative Foundational Antediluvian Era (1,700 years) Creation Event The Deluge 2.300 The Deluge Creation Week TIME -ROCK TRANSFORMATION
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represent deposits from large, isolated basins that have uplifted. Examples include the Belt Supergroup that forms the northern Rockies of western Montana and northern and central Idaho, the Uinta Mountains in northeast Utah, and the Precambrian sedimentary rocks in the eastern Grand Canyon. Whether these Precambrian sedimentary rocks are pre-Flood or Flood has not yet been resolved. Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata can form large sheets over extensive areas such as the Great Plains, but they are generally broken and tilted in the mountains in the western United States, except for the Colorado Plateau. It is possible that the Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata in the Rocky Mountains were once continuous over the region like on the Colorado Plateau. Tracks are one of Walker’s defining criteria for the Inundatory Stage. 10 The Mesozoic of the Rocky Mountains and High Plains has millions of dinosaur tracks, as well as thousands of eggs, on flat bedding planes. It seems obvious that these tracks and eggs are from the Flood, and since they represent live dinosaurs, the Mesozoic in this area would be from the Inundatory Stage, early in the Flood. 11 So, these Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata were deposited early in the Flood, similar to eastern Australia. Although the general sequence of Paleozoic to Mesozoic seems valid, the periods within those eras may not represent an exact sequence, since the Devonian in one place may be deposited before the Cambrian in another.
3) The ‘ Cenozoic ’ can be Early Flood, Late Flood or Post Flood
The ‘Cenozoic’, on the other hand, is the most problematic. 12 It generally fills basins in the Rocky Mountains and outcrops as sheets on the High Plains. There are indications of erosion of many hundreds and even a few thousand meters of rock in these areas. 5,13,14 The high areas of the western United States are a scoured surface. That is why there is so much bedrock close to the surface in those areas. There is clear evidence for sheet erosion followed by channelized erosion, which correspond to Walker’s two phases of the Recessional Stage of the Flood. This erosion must have occurred mainly in the Recessional Stage of the Flood between Days 150 and 371. So, much of the Cenozoic strata not eroded in the Rocky Mountain basins and High Plains was likely deposited during the Inundatory Stage of the Flood. Some of this strata is dated late Cenozoic in the geological column, 15 implying that ‘late Cenozoic’ strata can be early Flood! There also are mammal tracks in some of the Cenozoic strata in these basins that reinforce the deduction that most of the remaining Cenozoic strata were deposited in the Inundatory Stage. 16,17 Based on Walker’s model, tracks of mammals on Flood strata must have occurred in the Inundatory Stage. This evidence indicates that practically all strata, clear up to the Pliocene, in the higher areas of the western United States were deposited in the first half of the Flood during the Inundatory Stage. Sediments eroded from the high areas of the western United States were redeposited far to the west and east. Eroded debris would have been deposited in deeper areas where currents would decrease. Strong currents eroding the uplifting western United States would have pulverized much of the rock, but the most resistant rocks would have been carried far from their source and deposited as a lag or as basin fill. The most resistant rock of significant volume is quartzite. Quartzite cobbles and boulders, well rounded by water, are found over 1,000 km to the east and 700 km to the west of their Rocky Mountain sources. 18–21 These quartzites are practically all dated as Cenozoic by mainstream geologists, based on included mammal fossils, especially in interbeds, but they would be part of the Recessional or late Stage of the Flood. Furthermore, the eroded strata would have been redeposited on the continental shelf off the western US—a Recessional Stage feature of the Flood. 2,22 The eroded material probably would also have been deposited in basins near the coast, such as the lower Mississippi River Valley. Much of the Cenozoic strata of Washington, Oregon, and California could be Recessional Stage sedimentation. Mammals, which are found in Cenozoic high western U.S. basins, should be mostly pulverized by the powerful recessional stage currents and turbulence, which Klevberg and Oard estimated would have flowed over 30 m/sec. 23 The strata in these areas are generally dated as “Cenozoic” by microorganisms and terrestrial mammals. These Cenozoic strata would be a late Flood or Recessional Stage feature.
Figure 2. The conformable contact between the Precambrian Belt Supergroup, Lahood conglomerate (bottom right), with the conglomeritic Cambrian Flathead Sandstone (upper left) in the steeping dipping strata (generally about 60 degrees to the northeast) near the top of the Bridger Mountains, northeast of Bozeman, Montana (view southeast). There is one billion years of missing uniformitarian time at the contact.

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Massive Recessional Stage erosion may also explain sparse human fossils in sedimentary rocks. If human remains were mostly deposited in the upper sedimentary layers by Day 150, these layers would have been heavily eroded from currently high areas of Earth, pulverized, and deposited over lower areas towards the continual edges including the shelves. 24 There is also the likelihood that some ‘Cenozoic’ sediment on the bottom of the ocean, mostly dated by microfossils, is post-Flood, although microfossils could have been laid down early in the Flood, late in the Flood, or afterwards. Microorganisms would have proliferated in the oceans during the Recessional Stage of the Flood because of the huge amount of nutrients flowing into the ocean and mixing at all depths. High microorganism productivity would be expected to continue after the Flood due to the warm ocean and rapid overturning during the Ice Age that would help keep nutrient levels abundant in the upper layers of the ocean. 25 The Flood probably deposited the deeper sediments while the upper sediments are likely post-Flood, although ocean bottom reworking would result in exceptions. 26,27 Some Paleocene ocean bottom sediments may be post-Flood, while some Pliocene sediments could be from the Flood, based on uncertainties in evolutionary microorganism classification. Another indicator of post-Flood Cenozoic sediments on the bottom of the ocean is ice-rafted material. Ice rafting into the ocean would be expected in the middle to late Ice Age because of the need for sufficient time for glaciers and ice sheets to build and spread to the oceans, which were warm at the beginning of the Ice Age. 25,28 Ice rafted debris (if the interpretation is correct) is found in sediment dated by microfossils as Oligocene and Miocene. 29 Some of the sediment from the early Ice Age could be dated as Paleocene or Eocene by uniformitarians. If the oxygen isotope/temperature relation holds generally true for ocean bottom microorganisms, much of the Cenozoic shows a cooling trend, as would be expected in the oceans during the post-Flood Ice Age. 30 So, in the Flood model ‘Cenozoic’ can be early Flood, late Flood or post-Flood, depending upon the location. This comparison is based on logical deductions from Walker’s biblical geological model and the post-Flood Ice Age. The ‘Cenozoic’, as a worldwide part of the geological column, can refer to almost any specific time in the Flood.
4) Nonlinear Flood deposition
Many creationists have assumed a linear relationship between the geological column and the Flood and post- Flood period with the ‘Cenozoic being’ late Flood or post- Flood. 31 However, based on Walker’s model and reasonable defining criteria for his stages and phases, Flood deposition appears highly nonlinear with respect to the geological column. Practically all the current strata in the high western United States (and probably some of that eroded) were deposited early in the Flood. It is highly unlikely that ‘Cenozoic’ strata in the high western United States are post-Flood or even late Flood. 13,15,32,33 Thus, a vast amount of deposition occurred in the western United States early in the Flood. This has serious implications for any Flood model. Most creationist believe that the most violent part of the Flood was at the beginning with the start of the catastrophic mechanism, while the latter half of the Flood was more subdued and mainly an erosional event caused by differential up or down motion of the crust and upper mantle. 12,14 This generally goes along with the geological energy curve of Reed et al . 34
When we consider the question of how well the geological column represents a Flood order of deposition, we need to decide whether the column is an exact sequence of the chronology of the Flood or if it should be disposed of entirely. At the outset, we should be looking at the rocks and fossils by the mechanism that deposited them. In other words, we should begin with a system that treats the biblical Flood as the real event and not with a system that was set up assuming the Flood never occurred and that Earth is billions of years old. That is why I recommend Walker’s classification or model, which is based on reasonable deductions from Scripture. Walker uses classification criteria for his phases and stages of the Flood. When we apply Walker’s model to the field evidence, we find that much of the Precambrian, Paleozoic, and Mesozoic strata were laid down in the Inundatory Stage or the first 150 days of the Flood. The Cenozoic strata can be early Flood, late Flood, or post- Flood depending upon what particular index fossil was used to classify the strata and the location. In other words, Flood sedimentation is highly nonlinear with most sediment deposited in the Inundatory Stage, as the Floodwater was rising on the earth. The Recessive Stage represents mainly continental erosion by receding Floodwater and deposition on the continental margins. Figure 3. Tertiary cooling curve for the bottom of the ocean off Antarctica based on oxygen isotopes of benthic foraminifera from Deep Sea Drilling Project sites 277, 279 and 281.
70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 0 5 10 15 20 0 Temperature o C

This means that the geological column sits in the middle position between the two extremes of either an absolute global sequence or total irrelevance. The geological column is a general order of Flood deposition but highly nonlinear and with many exceptions.
Abbreviation: CRSQ = Creation Research Society Quarterly 1. Oard, M.J., Is the geologic column a global sequence? Journal of Creation 24 (1):56–64, 2010. 2. Walker, T. A biblical geological model: in; Walsh, R.E. (ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism, (technical symposium sessions), Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 581–592, 1994. 3. Whitcomb Jr, J.C. and Morris, H.M., The Genesis Flood , Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI, 1961. 4. Froede Jr, C.R., A proposal for a creationist geological timescale, CRSQ 32 :90–94, 1995. 5. Oard, M., Vertical tectonics and the drainage of Floodwater: a model for the Middle and Late Diluvian Period—Part I, CRSQ 38 (1):3–17, 2001; p. 7. 6. Woodmorappe, J., A diluviological treatise on the stratigraphic separation of fossils: in; Studies in Flood Geology, 2nd edition, Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 23–75, 1999; p. 24. 7. Woodmorappe, J., Noah’s Ark: A Feasibility Study , Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, 1996. The number of animals required on the Ark depends on what represents a biblical “kind”. Woodmorappe used the genus for the sake of his calculations, yielding 16,000 animals, and that represented a conservative position. He noted that the biblical kind may well be at the “family” level in which case the number of animals would only be several thousand. 8. Walker, T., The basement rocks of the Brisbane area, Australia: where do they fit in the creation model? Journal of Creation 10 (2):241–257, 1996. 9. Walker, T., The Great Artesian Basins, Australia, Journal of Creation 10 (3):379–390, 1996. 10. Walker, ref. 2, p. 589. 11. Oard, M.J., The Missoula Flood Controversy and the Genesis Flood , Creation Research Society Books, Chino Valley, AZ, pp. 103–105, 2004. 12. Oard, M., Vertical tectonics and the drainage of Floodwater: a model for the Middle and Late Diluvian Period—Part II, CRSQ 38 (2):79–95, 2001. 13. Oard, M., Where is the Flood/post-Flood boundary in the rock record? Journal of Creation 10 (2):258–278, 1996. 14. Oard, M.J. and Klevberg, P., Deposits remaining from the Genesis Flood: rim gravels of Arizona, CRSQ 42 (1):1–17, 2005. 15. Thompson, G.R., Fields, R.W. and Alt, D., Land-based evidence for Tertiary climatic variations: Northern Rockies, Geology 10 :413–417, 1982. 16. Lockley, M. and Hunt, A.P., Dinosaur Tracks and Other Fossil Footprints in the Western United States, Columbia University Press, New York, 1995. 17. Oard, M.J., Dinosaurs in the Flood: a response, Journal of Creation 12 (1):69–86, 1998; pp. 69–78. 18. Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J. and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites: Part 1—east of the Rocky Mountains, Journal of Creation 19 (3):76–90, 2005. 19. Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J. and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites: Part 2—west of the Rocky Mountains, Journal of Creation 20 (2):71–81, 2006. 20. Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J. and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites: Part 3—failure of uniformitarian interpretations, Journal of Creation 20 (3):78–86, 2006. 21. Oard, M.J., Hergenrather, J. and Klevberg, P., Flood transported quartzites: Part 4—diluvial interpretations, Journal of Creation 21 (1):86–91, 2007. 22. Spencer, W.R. and Oard, M.J., The Chesapeake Bay impact and Noah’s Flood, CRSQ 41 (3):206–215, 2004. 23. Klevberg, P. and Oard. M.J., Paleohydrology of the Cypress Hills Formation and Flaxville gravel: in; Walsh, R.E. (ed.), Proceedings of the Fourth International Conference on Creationism (technical symposium sessions), Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 361–378, 1998. 24. Austin, S.A., Baumgardner, J.R., Humphreys, D.R., Snelling, A.A., Vardiman, L. and Wise, K.P., Catastrophic plate tectonics: a global Flood model of Earth history. In Walsh, R.E. (editor), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism (technical symposium sessions), Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 609–621, 1994; p. 614. 25. Oard, M.J., An Ice Age Caused by the Genesis Flood, Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 70–75, 1990. 26. Thiede, J., Reworking in Upper Mesozoic and Cenozoic central Pacific deep-sea sediments, Nature 289 :667–670, 1981. 27. Woodmorappe, J., An anthology of matters significant to creationism and diluviology: report 2: in; Studies in Flood Geology , (2nd ed.), Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 79–101, 1999. 28. Oard, M.J., Frozen in Time: The Woolly Mammoths, the Ice Age, and the Biblical Key to Their Secrets, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2004. 29. Oard, ref. 18, p. 81. 30. Vardiman, L. Sea-Floor Sediments and the Age of the Earth , Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, 1996. 31. Garner, P., Robinson, S., Garton, M. and Tyler, D., Comments on polar dinosaurs and the Genesis Flood, CRSQ 32 (4):232–234, 1996. 32. Oard, M.J. and Whitmore, J.H., The Green River Formation of the west-central United States: Flood or post-Flood? Journal of Creation 20 (1):45–85, 2006. 33. Oard, M.J., Defining the Flood/post-Flood boundary in sedimentary rocks, Journal of Creation 21 (1):98–110, 2007. 34. Reed, J.K., Froede Jr, C.R., and Bennett, C.B., A biblical Christian framework for Earth history research: Part IV—the role of geologic energy in interpreting the stratigraphic record, CRSQ 33 (2):97–101, 1996.
Michael J. Oard has an M.S. in Atmospheric Science from the University of Washington and is now retired after working as a professional meteorologist with the US National Weather Service in Montana for 30 years. He is the author of A n Ice Age Caused by the Genesis Flood, Ancient Ice Ages or Gigantic Submarine Landslides ? , Frozen in Time and Flood by Design . He serves on the board of the Creation Research Society.
Limestone caves: A Result of Noah’s Flood?
by Robert Doolan, John Mackay, Dr Andrew Snelling and Dr Allen Hallby

Late one summer’s afternoon in 1901, a cowboy named Jim White was riding through the arid foothills of the Guadalupe Mountains in south-east New Mexico. Suddenly he was startled by a huge black cloud rising from the ground in front of him. He reined his horse to a stop. This cloud was not like any he had seen before, so he decided to see what made it different.

As he galloped closer, Jim realised this funnel shaped cloud was formed by a massive swarm of bats! Millions of them were spiralling out of the sandy hillside. Jim was puzzled. What were so many bats doing here? Where did they come from? He resolved to find out.

With a battered kerosene lamp and a rope ladder, Jim descended deep into a hole he found in the mountain side. He found tunnels and passageways. Warily he followed one tunnel. Soon it led him to the bats’ resting place. The floor was slippery with bats’ droppings.

Cautiously Jim crept back. He followed another passage. Before long this tunnel opened up to reveal something amazing. In the flickering light of his lamp, Jim realised he was in an enormous room. He could see huge stone ‘icicles’ hanging from the high ceiling. Great pillars rose from the floor. Slender sticks of stone were everywhere, and in a far corner he could just make out a pond with stone ‘lily pads’ floating on its surface. It looked like Ali Baba’s cave - only these treasures were in stone.

Over the following years, Jim found miles of connecting corridors in the cave, and bigger and more beautiful limestone chambers. His cave was like a glorious stone palace. Jim White, the ‘limestone cowboy’, had discovered Carlsbad Caverns, the most spectacular cave in North America, and one of the most spectacular in the world.

Carlsbad Caverns’ largest room, called the Big Room, is so large it could contain almost 50 basketball courts. In one area the ceiling is higher than a 30-storey building. In 1924, US President Calvin Coolidge declared these spectacular limestone caves a national monument.

But how did such beautiful limestone caves form? When did their formation occur? Did they really form over huge time spans? Or can they be explained in the framework of Noah’s Flood not many thousands of years ago?
In the Beginning

New Mexico’s Carlsbad Caverns have been said to have begun forming some 60 million years ago by the action of groundwater on the original beds of limestone.1 As acid rainwater fell on the limestone beds, it ‘nibbled’ away at the rock until hair-thin cracks appeared. More rain trickled down, enlarging the cracks and forming paths. Paths widened into tunnels. Tunnels crisscrossed and grew into rooms.2

That many limestone caves formed by the solution process is indicated by four types of geological evidence.

 1. Modern limestone caves often show evidence of ongoing solution - the chemical composition of groundwater leaving caves often confirms this. Continually growing stalactites and stalagmites within caves prove that solution is occurring above the caves.

 2. The shapes of structures in the limestone layers within caves often resemble structures produced in solution experiments. This is particularly so at the intersections of fractures in the limestone layers that geologists call joints, where shapes that have been produced can be predicted on the basis of solution kinetics theory.3

 3. The passages in limestone caves usually follow joints, fractures, and the level of the land surface in such a way as to suggest that the permeability of the limestone layers, that is, the obvious paths along which groundwater must have flowed, has influenced the position of cave passages.4

 4. Caves resembling those found in limestone do not occur in insoluble, non-limestone rocks. The apparent causal relationship implies that some characteristic of the limestone (i.e. its solubility) has affected the occurrence of the caves.

That solution therefore is a major factor in the formation of limestone caves appears to be well substantiated. Most geologists, however, would believe that these solution processes take millions of years to form caves.

But millions of years are not necessary for limestone cave formation. Geologist Dr Steve Austin, of the Institute for Creation Research in San Diego, California, has studied water chemistry and flow rates in a large cave-containing area in central Kentucky. He concluded that a cave 59 metres long and one metre square in the famous Mammoth Cave Upland region of Kentucky could form in one year!5 If even remotely similar rates of formation occurred elsewhere, huge caverns obviously could form in a very short time.

Dr Austin proposes that the high rate of solution of limestone in that area should cause concern to geologists who believe that slow, uniform processes have brought about formation of such caves. In two million years - the assumed duration of the Pleistocene Epoch and the inferred age of many caves - a layer of limestone more than 100 metres thick ‘could be completely dissolved off of Kentucky (assuming present rates and conditions).6

So how could limestone caves form, using a catastrophic model of earth’s history which includes acceptance of a world-wide Flood?
Model for Caves Origin

The problem is of course that we are attempting to understand the origin of limestone caves for which the evidence of the events forming them has been largely removed. But this problem confronts all scientists endeavouring to explain the formation of limestone caves. Nonetheless, there would be general agreement over the processes of formation, but not the rate of formation. Dr Austin’s studies, plus our own, convince us that the following model for limestone cave formation is entirely feasible within the short time framework of a recent worldwide catastrophic Flood, based on the available verifiable evidence.

First, the limestone layers have to be laid down. Dr Austin believes most major limestone strata accumulated during the Flood.(7) The primary reason for this belief is that most of the major limestone strata either contain large numbers of catastrophically buried fossils (often corals and shellfish) or are in a sequence of other strata that contain large numbers of catastrophically buried fossils.

As a layer of lime sediment was deposited, it would have been buried rapidly under huge amounts of other sediments. The weight on top of the lime sediments would compact them, and tend to expel the water they contained. Fluid pressure in the sediments would have been great, but lack of a direct escape exit would retard water loss and tend to prevent sediments from completely drying out and thus slow down the process of turning to stone. The major water loss would probably be through joints (internal cracks) formed while the sediments were hardening.

Second, as the Flood waters receded, uplift and other earth movements would have occurred as implied by the statements in Psalm 104:6-9.8 Thus such earth movements would fold and tilt the sediment layers all over the earth so that concurrent and subsequent erosion would have worn the upper layers down to a new level. The layers of lime sediments would now again be near the surface. Continuing earth movements would cause movement on the joints and build up fluid pressure; the removal of the overlying sediment layers would probably have speeded up both compaction and fluid outflow from the partly hardened sediments. Pressure would be highest near the surface, causing sediment to be ‘piped out’, that is, removed along the joints where the rock would have been weakest. As the joint opened, channels for both vertical and horizontal water flow would appear.

Third, when the Flood waters had receded completely, the groundwater level of the area would not be immediately in balance, and so horizontal flow would be considerable. Acids from decaying organic matter at the surface, and below, would tend to move to just below the water table, where the fastest horizontal flow would be occurring. Solution of newly hardened limestone would occur mainly in horizontal channels just below the water table. Conditions ideal for solution of limestone just below the water table would also be helped by the mixing with the groundwater of these carbon dioxide rich, oxygen poor, organic rich, highly saline waters percolating down from the surface. This would then develop a cave system at a particular level.

Fourth, when the excess groundwater had been largely drained away and the caves dissolved out, the water table would then be at a lower level so that the caves would become filled with air instead of water. Such conditions coupled with continued downward drainage of excess surface and nearsurface waters would finally bring the rapid deposition of stalactites, stalagmites, and flowstone in the cave systems.

Conclusion and References
In this model of cave origin, there seems to be no major obstacle to a short time period for the solution of limestone caves. Caves need not have formed slowly over many thousands or millions of years, but could have formed rapidly during the closing stages of, and after, the world-wide Flood of Noah several thousand years ago.

 The New Book of Knowledge, Grolier Incorporated, New York, 1973, Vol. 3, p. 153. Article: Caves and Caverns.
 Lange, A.L., Encyclopaedia Britannica, 15th ed., Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc., Chicago, Vol. 3, 1977, p. 1026. Article: Caves and CaveSystems.
 Moore, G.W., The Encyclopedia of Geomorphology, R.W. Fairbridge (ed.), Reinhold Book Co., New York, 1968, pp. 652–653. Article: Limestone Caves; Thornbury, W.D., Principles of Geomorphology, John Wiley, New York, 2nd ed., 1959, pp. 324–331.
 Steven A. Austin, Origin of Limestone Caves, Impact article No. 79, Institute for Creation Research, San Diego, January 1980.
 For fuller comments on this subject see Snelling, A.A., and Malcolm, D.E., 1987. Earth’s Unique Topography, Creation Ex Nihilo (this issue).
The heritage trail at Siccar Point, Scotland
Commemorating an idea that did not work
by Tas Walker

High above the cliffs on the Scottish coast—60 km east of Edinburgh—is an interpretive billboard that overlooks a rocky point.1 It is part of a heritage trail opened in 2006, celebrating the life of James Hutton, a local farmer and physician who became known as the ‘father of modern geology’.2 He proposed the geological philosophy of uniformitarianism—that present geological processes are the key to understanding the rocks.
Hutton assumed Noah’s Flood never happened. He did not appreciate the enormity of that global catastrophe, which involved faulting, folding, and immense deposition and erosion.

The locals are keen to capitalize on Siccar Point, claiming it is the most important geological site in the world.2 The story goes that these rocks led Hutton to conclude the earth was not made in six days. Rather, faulting and folding were important processes in the evolution of the landscape.3 The sign at the site says the rocks proved geological time was virtually unlimited, contrary to the few thousand years, which most people believed at that time.1

But Hutton did not discover deep time, he assumed it. That was partly because Hutton’s knowledge of geology in the late 1700s was seriously limited. He did not know that the lower Silurian rocks were turbidite beds, deposited rapidly from underwater density currents that sped across the ocean floor as fast as 100 km (60 miles) per hour.4 Neither did he know the upper strata were of a terrestrial origin, deposited from a vast expanse of fast flowing water that covered a large part of the continent, depositing thick, cross-bedded strata.5,6

But most significantly, Hutton assumed Noah’s Flood never happened. He did not appreciate the enormity of that global catastrophe, which involved faulting, folding, and immense deposition and erosion. During the Flood, the rocks at Siccar Point were eroded in days or weeks, not over millions of years.

Hutton is hailed as a father of modern geology for his philosophy of uniformitarianism, but ironically geologists now acknowledge that uniformitarianism does not work. Toward the end of his career, Derek Ager, professor of geology at Swansea, Wales, said of uniformitarianism, “We have allowed ourselves to be brain-washed into avoiding any interpretation of the past that involves extreme and what might be termed ‘catastrophic’ processes.”7

Hutton’s friend (and popularizer) John Playfair, who accompanied him by boat to Siccar Point in 1788, is famous for his impressions of that trip. He is quoted on the sign. “The mind seemed to grow giddy by looking so far into the abyss of time.”

However, as the son of a Presbyterian minister, it is unfortunate that Playfair did not connect his Bible with the world around him. A better response would have been, “The mind was sobered to look upon the enormity of God’s judgment at the time of Noah.”

References and notes
 Interpretation board, Siccar Point;
 International interest in new James Hutton trail, Berwickshire News, 21 June 2006;
 Siccar Point, Gazetteer for Scotland, 2011;
 Fine, I.V. et al., The Grand Banks landslide-generated tsunami of November 18, 1929: preliminary analysis and numerical modelling, Marine Geology 215:45–57, 2005.
 Browne, M., et al., Stratigraphical Framework for the Devonian (Old Red Sandstone) Rocks of Scotland south of a line from Fort William to Aberdeen, British Geological Survey, Research Report RR 01 04, p. 50, 2002;[1].pdf
 For a detailed geological analysis of Siccar Point see: Walker, T., Unmasking a long-age icon, Creation 27(1):50–55, 2004;
 Ager, D., The Nature of the Stratigraphical Record, Macmillan, London, p. 70, 1993.
 After this the landscape was eroded by ice sheets in the post-Flood Ice Age.
Can Flood geology explain thick chalk beds?
by Andrew A. Snelling

Most people would have heard of, or seen (whether in person or in photographs), the famous White Cliffs of Dover in southern England. The same beds of chalk are also found along the coast of France on the other side of the English Channel. The chalk beds extend inland across England and northern France, being found as far north and west as the Antrim Coast and adjoining areas of Northern Ireland. Extensive chalk beds are also found in North America, through Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee (the Selma Chalk), in Nebraska and adjoining states (the Niobrara Chalk), and in Kansas (the Fort Hayes Chalk).1

The Latin word for chalk is creta. Those familiar with the geological column and its evolutionary time-scale will recognize this as the name for one of its periods—the Cretaceous. Because most geologists believe in the geological evolution of the earth’s strata and features over millions of years, they have linked all these scattered chalk beds across the world into this so-called ‘chalk age’, that is, a supposedly great period of millions of years of chalk bed formation.
So What Is Chalk?

Porous, relatively soft, fine-textured and somewhat friable, chalk normally is white and consists almost wholly of calcium carbonate as the common mineral calcite. It is thus a type of limestone, and a very pure one at that. The calcium carbonate content of French chalk varies between 90 and 98%, and the Kansas chalk is 88–98% calcium carbonate (average 94%).2 Under the microscope, chalk consists of the tiny shells (called tests) of countless billions of microorganisms composed of clear calcite set in a structureless matrix of fine-grained calcium carbonate (microcrystalline calcite). The two major microorganisms whose remains are thus fossilised in chalk are foraminifera and the spikes and cells of calcareous algæ known as coccoliths and rhabdoliths.

How then does chalk form? Most geologists believe that ‘the present is the key to the past’ and so look to see where such microorganisms live today, and how and where their remains accumulate. The foraminifera found fossilised in chalk are of a type called the planktonic foraminifera, because they live floating in the upper 100–200 metres of the open seas. The brown algæ that produce tiny washer-shaped coccoliths are known as coccolithophores, and these also float in the upper section of the open seas.

The oceans today cover almost 71% of the earth’s surface. About 20% of the oceans lie over the shallower continental margins, while the rest covers the deeper ocean floor, which is blanketed by a variety of sediments. Amongst these are what are known as oozes, so-called because more than 30% of the sediment consists of the shells of microorganisms such as foraminifera and coccolithophores.3 Indeed, about half of the deep ocean floor is covered by light-coloured calcareous (calcium carbonate-rich) ooze generally down to depths of 4,500–5,000 metres. Below these depths the calcium carbonate shells are dissolved. Even so, this still means that about one quarter of the surface of the earth is covered by these shell — rich deposits produced by these microscopic plants and animals living near the surface of the ocean.

Geologists believe that these oozes form as a result of these microorganisms dying, with the calcium carbonate shells and coccoliths falling slowly down to accumulate on the ocean floor. It has been estimated that a large 150 micron (0.15mm or 0.006 inch) wide shell of a foraminifer may take as long as 10 days to sink to the bottom of the ocean, whereas smaller ones would probably take much longer. At the same time, many such shells may dissolve before they even reach the ocean floor. Nevertheless, it is via this slow accumulation of calcareous ooze on the deep ocean floor that geologists believe chalk beds originally formed.
The ‘Problems’ For Flood Geology

Microfossils and microcrystalline calcite—Cretaceous chalk, Ballintoy Harbour, Antrim Coast, Northern Ireland under the microscope (60x) (photo: Dr. Andrew Snelling)

Microfossils and microcrystalline calcite—Cretaceous chalk, Ballintoy Harbour, Antrim Coast, Northern Ireland under the microscope (60x) (photo: Dr. Andrew Snelling)

This is the point where critics, and not only those in the evolutionist camp, have said that it is just not possible to explain the formation of the chalk beds in the White Cliffs of Dover via the geological action of the Flood (Flood geology). The deep-sea sediments on the ocean floor today average a thickness of about 450 metres (almost 1,500 feet), but this can vary from ocean to ocean and also depends on proximity to land.4 The sediment covering the Pacific Ocean Basin ranges from 300 to 600 metres thick, and that in the Atlantic is about 1,000 metres thick. In the mid-Pacific the sediment cover may be less than 100 metres thick. These differences in thicknesses of course reflect differences in accumulation rates, owing to variations in the sediments brought in by rivers and airborne dust, and the production of organic debris within the ocean surface waters. The latter is in turn affected by factors such as productivity rates for the microorganisms in question, the nutrient supply and the ocean water concentrations of calcium carbonate. Nevertheless, it is on the deep ocean floor, well away from land, that the purest calcareous ooze has accumulated which would be regarded as the present-day forerunner to a chalk bed, and reported accumulation rates there range from 1–8cm per 1,000 years for calcareous ooze dominated by foraminifera and 2–10 cm per 1,000 years for oozes dominated by coccoliths.5

Now the chalk beds of southern England are estimated to be around 405 metres (about 1,329 feet) thick and are said to span the complete duration of the so-called Late Cretaceous geological period,6 estimated by evolutionists to account for between 30 and 35 million years of evolutionary time. A simple calculation reveals that the average rate of chalk accumulation therefore over this time period is between 1.16 and 1.35cm per l,000 years, right at the lower end of today’s accumulation rates quoted above. Thus the evolutionary geologists feel vindicated, and the critics insist that there is too much chalk to have been originally deposited as calcareous ooze by the Flood.

But that is not the only challenge creationists face concerning deposition of chalk beds during the Flood. Schadewald has insisted that if all of the fossilised animals, including the foraminifera and coccolithophores whose remains are found in chalk, could be resurrected, then they would cover the entire planet to a depth of at least 45cm (18 inches), and what could they all possibly have eaten?7 He states that the laws of thermodynamics prohibit the earth from supporting that much animal biomass, and with so many animals trying to get their energy from the sun the available solar energy would not nearly be sufficient. Long-age creationist Hayward agrees with all these problems.8

Even creationist Glenn Morton has posed similar problems, suggesting that even though the Austin Chalk upon which the city of Dallas (Texas) is built is little more than several hundred feet (upwards of 100 metres) of dead microscopic animals, when all the other chalk beds around the world are also taken into account, the number of microorganisms involved could not possibly have all lived on the earth at the same time to thus be buried during the Flood.9 Furthermore, he insists that even apart from the organic problem, there is the quantity of carbon dioxide (CO2 ) necessary to have enabled the production of all the calcium carbonate by the microorganisms whose calcareous remains are now entombed in the chalk beds. Considering all the other limestones too, he says, there just couldn’t have been enough CO2 in the atmosphere at the time of the Flood to account for all these calcium carbonate deposits.
Creationist Responses

Two creationists have done much to provide a satisfactory response to these objections against Flood geology—geologists Dr Ariel Roth of the Geoscience Research Institute (Loma Linda, California) and John Woodmorappe. Both agree that biological productivity does not appear to be the limiting factor. Roth10 suggests that in the surface layers of the ocean these carbonate-secreting organisms at optimum production rates could produce all the calcareous ooze on the ocean floor today in probably less than 1,000 or 2,000 years. He argues that, if a high concentration of foraminifera of 100 per litre of ocean water were assumed,11 a doubling time of 3.65 days, and an average of 10,000 foraminifera per gram of carbonate,12 the top 200 metres of the ocean would produce 20 grams of calcium carbonate per square centimetre per year, or at an average sediment density of 2 grams per cubic centimetre, 100 metres in 1,000 years. Some of this calcium carbonate would be dissolved at depth so the time factor would probably need to be increased to compensate for this, but if there was increased carbonate input to the ocean waters from other sources then this would cancel out. Also, reproduction of foraminifera below the top 200 metres of ocean water would likewise tend to shorten the time required.

Coccolithophores on the other hand reproduce faster than foraminifera and are amongst the fastest growing planktonic algæ,13 sometimes multiplying at the rate of 2.25 divisions per day. Roth suggests that if we assume an average coccolith has a volume of 22 x 10-12 cubic centimetres, an average weight of 60 x 10-12 grams per coccolith,14 20 coccoliths produced per coccolithophore, 13 x 106 coccolithophores per litre of ocean water,15 a dividing rate of two times per day and a density of 2 grams per cubic centimetre for the sediments produced, one gets a potential production rate of 54cm (over 21 inches) of calcium carbonate per year from the top 100 metres (305 feet) of the ocean. At this rate it is possible to produce an average 100 metre (305 feet) thickness of coccoliths as calcareous ooze on the ocean floor in less than 200 years. Again, other factors could be brought into the calculations to either lengthen or shorten the time, including dissolving of the carbonate, light reduction due to the heavy concentration of these microorganisms, and reproducing coccoliths below the top 100 metres of ocean surface, but the net result again is to essentially affirm the rate just calculated.

Woodmorappe16 approached the matter in a different way. Assuming that all limestones in the Upper Cretaceous and Tertiary divisions of the geological column are all chalks, he found that these accounted for 17.5 million cubic kilometres of rock. (Of course, not all these limestones are chalks, but he used this figure to make the ‘problem’ more difficult, so as to get the most conservative calculation results.) Then using Roth’s calculation of a 100 metre thickness of coccoliths produced every 200 years, Woodmorappe found that one would only need 21.1 million square kilometres or 4.1% of the earth ’s surface to be coccolith-producing seas to supply the 17.5 million cubic kilometres of coccoliths in 1,600-1,700 years, that is, in the pre-Flood era. He also made further calculations by starting again from the basic parameters required, and found that he could reduce that figure to only 12.5 million square kilometres of ocean area or 2.5% of the earth’s surface to produce the necessary exaggerated estimate of 17.5 million cubic kilometres of coccoliths.
‘Blooms’ During The Flood

Scanning electron microscope (SEM) image of coccoliths in the Cretaceous chalk, Brighton, England (photo: Dr Joachim Scheven)

Scanning electron microscope (SEM) image of coccoliths in the Cretaceous chalk, Brighton, England (photo: Dr Joachim Scheven)

As helpful as they are, these calculations overlook one major relevant issue — these chalk beds were deposited during the Flood. Creationist geologists may have different views as to where the pre-Flood/Flood boundary is in the geological record, but the majority would regard these Upper Cretaceous chalks as having been deposited very late in the Flood. That being the case, the coccoliths and foraminiferal shells that are now in the chalk beds would have to have been produced during the Flood itself, not in the 1,600–1,700 years of the pre-Flood era as calculated by Woodmorappe, for surely if there were that many around at the outset of the Flood these chalk beds should have been deposited sooner rather than later during the Flood event. Similarly, Roth’s calculations of the required quantities potentially being produced in up to 1,000 years may well show that the quantities of calcareous oozes on today’s ocean floors are easily producible in the time-span since the Flood, but these calculations are insufficient to show how these chalk beds could be produced during the Flood itself.

Nevertheless, both Woodmorappe and Roth recognize that even today coccolith accumulation is not steady-state but highly episodic, for under the right conditions significant increases in the concentrations of these marine microorganisms can occur, as in plankton ‘blooms’ and red tides. For example, there are intense blooms of coccoliths that cause ‘white water’ situations because of the coccolith concentrations,17 and during bloom periods in the waters near Jamaica microorganism numbers have been reported as increasing from 100,000 per litre to 10 million per litre of ocean water.18 The reasons for these blooms are poorly understood, but suggestions include turbulence of the sea, wind,19 decaying fish,20 nutrients from freshwater inflow and upwelling, and temperature.21

Without a doubt, all of these stated conditions would have been generated during the catastrophic global upheaval of the Flood, and thus rapid production of carbonate skeletons by foraminifera and coccolithophores would be possible. Thermodynamic considerations would definitely not prevent a much larger biomass such as this being produced, since Schadewald who raised this as a ‘problem’ is clearly wrong. It has been reported that oceanic productivity 5–10 times greater than the present could be supported by the available sunlight, and it is nutrient availability (especially nitrogen) that is the limiting factor.22 Furthermore, present levels of solar ultraviolet radiation inhibit marine planktonic productivity.23

Quite clearly, under cataclysmic Flood conditions, including torrential rain, sea turbulence, decaying fish and other organic matter, and the violent volcanic eruptions associated with the ‘fountains of the deep’, explosive blooms on a large and repetitive scale in the oceans are realistically conceivable, so that the production of the necessary quantities of calcareous ooze to produce the chalk beds in the geological record in a short space of time at the close of the Flood is also realistically conceivable. Violent volcanic eruptions would have produced copious quantities of dust and steam, and the possible different mix of gases than in the present atmosphere could have reduced ultraviolet radiation levels. However, in the closing stages of the Flood the clearing and settling of this debris would have allowed increasing levels of sunlight to penetrate to the oceans.

Ocean water temperatures would have been higher at the close of the Flood because of the heat released during the cataclysm, for example, from volcanic and magmatic activity, and the latent heat from condensation of water. Such higher temperatures have been verified by evolutionists from their own studies of these rocks and deep-sea sediments,24 and would have also been conducive to these explosive blooms of foraminifera and coccolithophores. Furthermore, the same volcanic activity would have potentially released copious quantities of nutrients into the ocean waters, as well as prodigious amounts of the CO2 that is so necessary for the production of the calcium carbonate by these microorganisms. Even today the volcanic output of CO2 has been estimated at about 6.6 million tonnes per year, while calculations based on past eruptions and the most recent volcanic deposits in the rock record suggest as much as a staggering 44 billion tonnes of CO2 have been added to the atmosphere and oceans in the recent past (that is, in the most recent part of the post-Flood era).25
The Final Answer

The situation has been known where pollution in coastal areas has contributed to the explosive multiplication of microorganisms in the ocean waters to peak concentrations of more than 10 billion per litre.26 Woodmorappe has calculated that in chalk there could be as many as 3 x 1013 coccoliths per cubic metre if densely packed (which usually isn’t the case), yet in the known bloom just mentioned, 10 billion microorganisms per litre of ocean water equates to 1013 microorganisms per cubic metre.

Adapting some of Woodmorappe’s calculations, if the 10% of the earth’s surface that now contains chalk beds was covered in water, as it still was near the end of the Flood, and if that water explosively bloomed with coccolithophores and foraminifera with up to 1013 microorganisms per cubic metre of water down to a depth of less than 500 metres from the surface, then it would have only taken two or three such blooms to produce the required quantity of microorganisms to be fossilised in the chalk beds. Lest it be argued that a concentration of 1013 microorganisms per cubic metre would extinguish all light within a few metres of the surface, it should be noted that phytoflagellates such as these are able to feed on bacteria, that is, planktonic species are capable of heterotrophism (they are ‘mixotrophic’).27 Such bacteria would have been in abundance, breaking down the masses of floating and submerged organic debris (dead fish, plants, animals, etc.) generated by the flood. Thus production of coccolithophores and foraminifera is not dependent on sunlight, the supply of organic material potentially supporting a dense concentration.

Since, for example, in southern England there are three main chalk beds stacked on top of one another, then this scenario of three successive, explosive, massive blooms coincides with the rock record. Given that the turnover rate for coccoliths is up to two days,28 then these chalk beds could thus have been produced in as little as six days, totally conceivable within the time framework of the flood. What is certain, is that the right set of conditions necessary for such blooms to occur had to have coincided in full measure to have explosively generated such enormous blooms, but the evidence that it did happen is there for all to plainly see in these chalk beds in the geological record. Indeed, the purity of these thick chalk beds worldwide also testifies to their catastrophic deposition from enormous explosively generated blooms, since during protracted deposition over supposed millions of years it is straining credulity to expect that such purity would be maintained without contaminating events depositing other types of sediments. There are variations in consistency (see Appendix) but not purity. The only additional material in the chalk is fossils of macroscopic organisms such as ammonites and other molluscs, whose fossilisation also requires rapid burial because of their size (see Appendix).

No doubt there are factors that need to be better quantified in such a series of calculations, but we are dealing with a cataclysmic Flood, the like of which has not been experienced since for us to study its processes. However, we do have the results of its passing in the rock record to study, and it is clear that by working from what is known to occur today, even if rare and catastrophic by today’s standards, we can realistically calculate production of these chalk beds within the time framework and cataclysmic activity of the Flood, and in so doing respond adequately to the objections and ‘problems’ raised by the critics.
Appendix: ‘Hardgrounds’ and Other Fossils

The English chalk beds consist of alternating thin hard layers and thicker soft layers. The thin hard layers (or ‘Hardgrounds’) are encrusted on their upper surfaces with mollusc shells, worm tubes and bryozoan (lace coral) skeletons and show the work of various boring organisms. Consequently, Wonderly insists that:

 ‘it is thus obvious that during the formation of the chalk beds each hard layer was exposed to the sea water long enough to be bored by organisms and then encrusted by the animals which attached themselves. … This is of course also a record of the passage of many thousands of years’.1

Wonderly thus sees this as evidence that Noah’s Flood could not have deposited these chalk beds, and that the rock record took millions of years to form.

Scheven2 is equally familiar with ‘hardgrounds’ in his experience in the German Muschelkalk of the so-called Middle Triassic. In his Flood geology model, Scheven places these strata, and the English chalk beds, into the immediate post-Flood era, but in no way does he see any evidence in these rocks for the thousands of years that are so ‘obvious’ to Wonderly. Indeed, Scheven agrees that the chalk accumulated via mass propagations amidst mass extinctions and catastrophe. Furthermore, he describes the banding now observable in these chalk beds as due to transport and redeposition of calcareous ooze by water.

But what of the borings and encrusted shells and tubes? These are not necessarily the conclusive ‘proof’ of thousands of years Wonderly insists they are. Molluscs, worms and other marine life were left outside the Ark, some to survive the Flood, in their marine ‘home’. Once the explosive blooms had generated the voluminous foraminiferal shells and coccoliths, these would then sink and be swept away by the Flood currents before being deposited in the alternating bands of the chalk beds. Other marine life would have been trapped by these surges and entombed alive, hence their presence in the chalk beds. In whatever moments they had before expiring, it is not inconceivable that some of these creatures would try to reestablish their living positions on whatever momentary surfaces they found themselves on.

 Ed. Note: See also Dr Tas Walker’s answer to a critic, Are hardgrounds really a challenge to the global Flood?


 Wonderly, D., 1977. God’s Time-Records in Ancient Sediments, Crystal Press, Flint, Michigan, pp. 130–131.
 Scheven, J., 1990. The Flood/post-Flood boundary in the fossil record. Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Creationism, R.E. Walsh and C.L. Brooks (eds), Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Vol. 2, pp. 247–266.

 Pettijohn, F.J., 1957. Sedimentary Rocks, Harper and Row, New York, pp.400–401. Return to text.
 Pettijohn, Ref. 1. Return to text.
 Encyclopædia Britannica, 15th edition, 1992, 25:176–178. Return to text.
 Encyclopædia Britannica, Ref. 3. Return to text.
 Kukal, Z., 1990. The rate of geological processes Earth Science Reviews, 28:1–284 (pp. 109–117). Return to text.
 House, M., 1989. Geology of the Dorset Coast, Geologists’ Association Guide, The Geologists’ Association, London, pp. 4–10. Return to text.
 Schadewald, R.J., 1982. Six ‘Flood’ arguments creationists can’t answer. Creation/Evolution IV:12–17 (p. 13). Return to text.
 Hayward, A., 1987. Creation and Evolution: The Facts and the Fallacies, Triangle (SPCK), London, pp. 91–93. Return to text.
 Morton, G.R., 1984. The carbon problem. Creation Research Society Quarterly 20(4):212–219 (pp. 217–218). Return to text.
 Roth, A.A., 1985. Are millions of years required to produce biogenic sediments in the deep ocean? Origins 12(1):48–56. Return to text.
 Berger, W.H., 1969. Ecologic pattern of living planktonic foraminifera. Deep-Sea Research 16:1–24. Return to text.
 Berger, W.H., 1976. Biogenous deep sea sediments: production, preservation and interpretation. In: Chemical Oceanography, J. P. Riley and R. Chester (eds), 2nd edition, Academic Press, New York, Vol. 5, pp. 265–388. Return to text.
 Pasche, E., 1968. Biology and physiology of coccolithophorids. Annual Review of Microbiology 22:71–86. Return to text.
 Honjo, S., 1976. Coccoliths: production, transportation and sedimentation. Marine Micropaleontology 1:65–79; and personal communication to A.A. Roth. Return to text.
 Black, M. and Bukry, D., 1979. Coccoliths. In: The Encyclopedia of Paleontology, R. W. Fairbridge and D. Jablonski (eds), Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences, Dowden. Hutchinson and Ross, Stroudsberg, Pennsylvania, 7:194–199. Return to text.
 Woodmorappe, J., 1986. The antediluvian biosphere and its capability of supplying the entire fossil record. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Creationism, R. E. Walsh, C.L. Brooks and R.S. Crowell (eds), Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Vol. 2, pp. 205–218. Return to text.
 Sumich, J.L., 1976. Biology of Marine Life, William C. Brown. Iowa, pp. 118, 167. Return to text.
 Seliger, H.H., Carpenter, J.H., Loftus, M. and McElroy, W.D., 1970. Mechanisms for the accumulation or high concentrations of dinoflagellates in a bioluminescent bay. Limnology and Oceanography 15:234–245. Return to text.
 Pingree, R.D., Holligan, P.M. and Head, R.N., 1977. Survival of dinoflagellate blooms in the western English Channel. Nature 265:266–269. Return to text.
 Wilson, W.B. and Collier, A., 1955. Preliminary notes on the culturing of Gymnodinium brevis Davis. Science 121:394–395. Return to text.
 Ballantine, D. and Abbott,B. C., 1957. Toxic marine flagellates; their occurrence and physiological effects on animals. Journal of General Microbiology 16:274–281. Return to text.
 Tappan, H., 1982. Extinction or survival: selectivity and causes of Phanerozoic crises. Geological Society of America, Special Paper 190, p. 270. Return to text.
 Worrest, R.C., 1983. Impact of solar ultraviolet-B radiation (290–320nm) upon marine microalgæ. Physiologica Plantarum 58(3):432. Return to text.
 Vardiman, L., 1994. Ocean Sediments and the Age of the Earth, Institute for Creation Research, El Cajon, California (in preparation). Return to text.
 Leavitt, S.W., 1982. Annual volcanic carbon dioxide emission: an estimate from eruption chronologies. Environmental Geology, 4:15–21. Return to text.
 Roth, Ref. 10, p. 54. Return to text.
 Encyclop&ælig;dia Britannica, 15th edition, 1992, 26:283. Return to text.
 Sumich, Ref. 17. Return to text.

Papers 76 JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (3) 2010
The origin of the Carboniferous coal measures—part 1: Lessons from history
Joanna F. Woolley

Early geological researchers into the coal measures of the Carboniferous System sought to explain its origin in terms of geological processes operating over eons of time. Yet the evidence that they were continually uncovering presented more and more difficulties within that framework of thinking. Particularly troublesome were the difficulties relating to the roots of the fern trees, the dominant Carboniferous vegetation. The confusion even extended across national borders with the ideas of the geologists on the Continent conflicting with those in England and America, such as the Silvomarine hypothesis of the German Otto Kuntze. This confusion led the early geologists to devise secondary hypotheses to salvage their paradigm, hypotheses that are today part of the standard explanation for the origin of coal but are still inadequate to resolve the problems. The evidence suggests that geological processes were qualitatively different and of a larger scale than the pioneers of the discipline were prepared to consider. In other words, their paradigm needs updating. Focusing on the Carboniferous
The Carboniferous was the very first complete section of the geological column to have been described. The name ‘Carboniferous’ or ‘coal-bearing’ (from ‘carbo’, the Latin for ‘coal’, plus ‘fero’, the Latin for ‘I have’) was proposed by the English geologists William Conybeare and William Phillips in a paper published in 1822 to designate the coal-bearing strata in north-central England. Conybeare and Phillips’ Carboniferous Order included the Mountain or Carboniferous Limestone at its base, the Millstone Grit (or graywacke) in the middle, and the Coal Measures on top. 1 As the early geological researchers sought to explain the origin of the coal measures and to understand the fossils contained within the measures, they thought in terms of modern depositional environments. Their framework of thinking involved geological processes that operated slowly over eons of time, yet they uncovered evidence that demanded processes of larger scale than they were prepared to consider. As they encountered more and more anomalies that contradicted their expectations they resorted to secondary hypotheses that are still part of the standard explanation today, but which are still inadequate to account for the evidence. A review of the historical development of geological explanations for the origin of the Carboniferous Coal measures will be given because this will help us understand the issues involved as well as the problems that remain unresolved to this day.
The challenge to explain the fossils
Despite there being an incredible biodensity indicated by the abundance of fossils in the Coal Measures, there was a disturbing lack of biodiversity in them. They presented numerous well-preserved examples of fragments of plants, but they emphatically did not contain easily-found samples of the whole of these organisms. So prevalent was this disarticulation and so unfamiliar were some of the flora in them that the early pioneers were forced to place the fragments into ‘form genera’ instead of being able to describe genera of whole plants (figure 1). 2 They did this in order to make any progress at all. That is, those interested in the subject produced descriptions and graphics of parts of the plants, waiting for future fossil evidence to illuminate the relationships among them. One illustrative case of the challenges they faced was that of classifying the bark or periderm of the predominant fern trees (the lycopods) of the Upper Carboniferous. These often occurred in flattened and fragmented sections. Different layers of lycopod bark with different patterns soon became different form genera. In fact, lycopod bark from the same layer of the tree but situated at different levels on it also gave rise to different form genera. This was typical for all the parts of lycopods. Hence a single lycopod fern-tree could have rootlets, roots, different layers of bark, various protuberances in the bark, leaves, seeds (i.e. integumented megasporangiums), and spores all in different form genera (figure 2). This was also true for other Carboniferous plants. Indeed, there were even cases of the same part of a Carboniferous plant being placed in different form genera due to its having undergone more than one type of distinct fossilization. Despite there being an abundance of lycopod fern-tree trunk fossils (as examples, Sigillaria and Lepidodendron ), they were found to be disturbingly separated from any roots (the Stigmaria ), were often casts (implying a hollow or easily-destroyed interior), and were sometimes found as flattened or decorticated bark. Concerning fragments of Stigmaria (the roots—figure 3) without Sigillaria (the trunks), C.W. Williamson, the leading expert on Stigmaria , stated “How these roots have so often become disturbed and broken up is a question not easily answered.” 3 Not surprisingly, the separation of the Stigmaria from the fern-tree trunks initially caused a great deal of consternation. The problem was that such excellent preservation combined with disarticulation of the trees pointed to catastrophe rather than slow deposition over millennia by present processes Papers 77 JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (3) 2010 within a swamp, as they had expected from their geological philosophy. Some extent of the intensity of the catastrophe involved can be gleaned when we examine quantitatively the forces necessary to shear the trunks and limbs of these trees. 4 Especially disconcerting was the fact that the Stigmaria (the roots) were found in different stratigraphic layers than the trunks. At first it was thought that the Stigmaria were a sort of succulent aquatic plant with its rootlets being considered its leaves. 5 Yet these leaves were arranged spirally around the main root (like a little brush). The mystery was eventually solved when Binney found a Sigillaria (the trunk) attached to Stigmaria. Then, to produce an amazing confusion out of this newly-found order, in the Cape Benton Coalfield a Stigmaria was found attached to a Lepidodendron (the other type of dominant Lycopod trunk)! So there was the unprecedented situation of having one uniquely distinguishable root fossil for two readily differentiable and dissimilar tree-sized plants. This quandary has gotten worse due to additional fossil finds. 6 One late nineteenth century researcher summarized the state of wondrous confusion as follows: “All the geologists who have examined the distribution of the carboniferous measures and the composition of the strata have remarked the predominance of Stigmaria in the clay deposits which constitute the bottom of the coal beds. As the remains of Stigmaria are always [ sic ] found in that peculiar kind of clay and also in the intervening siliceous beds generally called clay partings, without any fragments of Sigillaria , it has been supposed that the clay materials were merely a kind of soft mould where the Sigillaria began their life by the germination of seeds and there expanded their roots, while their trunks growing up did contribute by their woody matter the essential composition formed above clay beds. This opinion has the appearance of truth indeed. But how to explain the fact that beds of fireclay twenty to thirty feet [6 to 9 meters] in thickness are mostly composed of Stigmaria , or filled from the base to the top with remains of these plants, stems, and leaves, without a fragment of Sigillaria ever found amongst them and without any coal above? Roots cannot live independently of trunks or of aerial plants.” 7
Figure 1. Schematic of a Lepidodendron fern tree showing the location of some of the numerous ‘ form genera ’ associated with it.
Figure 2. An interpretative challenge: flattened lycopod bark (arrow at top) in close proximity to a Stigmaria (its central core or stele is the cylinder at the bottom center—bottom arrow). This is a typical occurrence in the sandstone layer immediately below the Middle Kittanning Coal of Portersville, Pennsylvania, United States of America. (Collection of Daniel A. Woolley)
Figure 3. Schematic of Stigmaria structure, including radiating rootlets. Stigmaria Rootlets of Stigmaria Lepidocarpon or Achlamydocarpon Lepidostrobophyllum Lepidodendron Lagenicula Lycospora Lepidostrobus Lepidophylloides Eskdalia Ulodendron Haloniz Papers 78 JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (3) 2010
The abundance of ferns in the coal and shale layers led to the conjecture that the environment in which they flourished was a warm or tropical one. Of course, as noted very early by Charles Darwin (in his well-known Voyage of the Beagle ), peat-forming swamps do not exist in the tropics: they are confined to the temperate zones. 8 Not only that, but once the extent of Carboniferous coals became known, their phenomenal distribution in area and uniformity in thickness and flora composition became problems of the greatest magnitude. This did not go unnoticed in the non- English-speaking world. Furthermore there was an unstated but rather natural assumption that the fern foliage that was so similar in appearance to that of modern ferns reflected a plant that was closely related to them, occupying the same ecological niche. It wasn’t until the beginning of the twentieth century that two researchers were able to discern by clever deductions from fossil evidence that these ferns were seed ferns whose seeds may have been well suited to an aquatic environment. 9 By that time paradigm paralysis had set in, and the premature hypotheses became standard working assumptions.
Problems with the notion of Paleozoic swamp-generated coal
The inferences of the early English and American researchers concerning the coal measures tended to differ from those of some German and French scientists. The English-speaking geologist milieu quickly ran into a multitude of seemingly inexplicable observations, ones that pointed to the untenable or questionable nature of their favored premature explanation of coal having formed in ancient swamps. Some of these observations and the complex explanations of the English-speaking geologists will be dealt with first and then the contrasting work of Continental geologists will be examined. A rather direct challenge to the idea of the swamp genesis of coal was the existence of marine fossil tube worms (figure 4), among other marine fossils, attached to the exterior, and sometimes the interior, layers of Sigillaria . These were seemingly identical to contemporary descendants of these animals. Dawson argued that these Spirorbis carbonarius fossils came from “closed lagoons and estuaries” because they could be found on the inside of Sigillaria , supposedly indicating that these Lycopods were dead and hollow when the infestation occurred. 10 Charles Lyell saw the same evidence as indicating marine invasion of ancient coastal swamps, even coming up with an inadequately small-scale contemporary analogue from an extremity of the Mississippi Delta to buttress his argument. 11 The incongruity of this explanation is obvious: continent-sized coal layers were supposedly invaded pervasively by coastal phenomena! These ad hoc arguments or fixes to the problem of maintaining the swamp explanation for the coal measures in the face of conflicting evidence certainly seemed to fail in the matter of scale, if not in other aspects. The sandstone wedges in the coal measures were another problem. These were expected to be aligned in one direction given the unbelievable uniformity of the coal layers and the expectation of sediment transport analogous to that observed today. However, they were not. Instead the wedge-shaped strata varied in almost every layer. It was as if they had been deposited by numerous rivers flowing from every direction into a closed sea or large lake. Furthermore, all the rivers had unnaturally wide mouths. 12 To overcome this problem, geologists suggested that widely-spread simultaneous changes in land levels were responsible for both the wedge patterns and the uniformity and purity of the coal layers. 13 Edward Martin commented on this: “[T]he astonishing part of it is that the changes in the level of the land must have been taking place simultaneously over these large areas.” He also quipped that “[F]orms of ‘flora’ found in the coal-beds in each country bear so close a resemblance to one another” that the suspicion was aroused that they unnaturally ignored latitude. Furthermore, considering the thin clay and shale partings in the coal, it was observed that it was surprising that so little sediment found its way into the coal itself. But this was ingeniously explained away by Charles Lyell when he noted that Cypress swamps at the mouth of the
Figure 4. Spirorbis (marine tube worm) fossils (left) from supposedly swamp deposits from Mazon Creek, Illinois, United States of America. Living Spirorbis (right). Author’s collection Papers 79 JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (3) 2010
Mississippi River filter out the sediment, leaving periodic floods to account for the coal ‘partings’ of sandstone or shale. 14 As it was stated at the end of the 19 th century by one geologist, concerning the artifice of using large-scale uniform changes in the elevation of the land to explain the multiple layers of coal: “Many a hard geological nut has only been overcome by the application of the principle of changes of level in the surface of the earth, and in this we shall find a sure explanation of the phenomena of the coal-measures.” 15 The idea of doing a geodynamical calculation to test the feasibility of such speculations seemed to be anathema to this new breed of geologist. Still, there were more troubling anomalies that plagued those promoting a swamp origin for the coal measures coal. Coal layers often times were discriminating in what plants they contained. In the Joggins, Nova Scotia area, at least two of the 56 coals were found to be composed almost entirely of leaves. 16 Unnatural plant associations were found, such as roots fossilized next to bark, and ferns or Stigmarian rootlets invading calamite stems. The relative absence of fauna in the Carboniferous was accompanied by the presence of ‘land reptiles and land snails’ within the hollow fern-tree trunks there. 17 The biodensity of the apparent coal environment was phenomenal, yet the biodiversity was remarkably low. In addition, coal layers were seen to bifurcate or split cleanly, without a hint of a facies-like transition. 18 There were hundreds of coal layers stacked one upon another in the associated repetitive strata units. And always there was the problem of scale, of their immense geographical extent. In an exacting science like physics, the immense scale of the deposit alone would have been termed a ‘catastrophe’, but all these anomalies drew scant attention as hard geological questions were answered by clever arguments, however tortuous those arguments may have been.
The Silvomarine hypothesis
The English and American geologists may have reached a metastable consensus regarding their speculations on the swamp origin of coal but that did not prevent a Continental scientist from coming up with an alternative explanation that addressed the difficulties without reliance upon a plethora of contortedly clever arguments. Otto Kuntze was a German botanist whose first love was geology. In his pioneering 1884 book entitled Phytogeogenesis: Die Vorweltliche Entwickelung der Erdkruste und der Pflanzen in Grundzugen (Phytogeogenesis: A basic outline of the prehistoric development of the earth’s crust and plants), later supplemented by his book Geogenetische Beitrage and subsequent publications, Dr Kuntze came up with many disturbing and cogent arguments challenging the peat-forming swamp paradigm for the formation of Upper Carboniferous coal. 19 He pointed out further salt water species that were to be found in these coal layers, as well as many fresh water and terrestrial ones. He sampled and chemically analyzed an incredible geographic distribution of coals and consistently confirmed that the coal measures were always associated with a marine environment when they were Upper Carboniferous (and a continental one when they were Tertiary). 20 He confirmed and reported upon what others had observed about the odd distribution of upright but truncated and hollow lycopod logs being stratigraphically separated from their roots. He noted a full-scale experiment that showed the upright placement of logs was likely to be the case for some time after their denudation and aqueous deposition; although he admitted to being baffled by the separation of lycopod trunks from their roots. He speculated that a coal-forming swimming mass or mat of leaves, bark, etc. was likely to be hydrodynamically separated from the trunks and roots of the lycopod fern trees. He had trouble explaining the mechanism for the burial of the repetitive Pennsylvanian coal layers, especially the intervening limestone layers associated with them, but he finally settled upon a windblown or aeolian origin for these observed sediments. Falling victim to the uniformitarian framework of thinking, which requires a full explanation in terms of present processes, his aeolian-origin hypothesis was a weak link in his otherwise strong case. It tended to present problems of scale—problems of scale, ironically, being one of his primary arguments against delta splay formation of coals.
Figure 5. Otto Kuntze ’ s reconstruction of an Upper Carboniferous floating forest appeared in both his books on the subject (Otto Kuntze, ref. 19, frontpiece and Geogenetische Beitrage , Gressner and Schramm, Leipzig, p. 72, 1895.) Papers 80 JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (3) 2010
Kuntze also proposed that the Upper Carboniferous coals were formed from floating forests (figure 5), the likes of which do not exist today (even though he was able to find small-scale floating island analogues in the Rio Paraguay and Mississippi rivers). These forests had as their matrix or core a mass of lycopod fern tree roots that were interlocking with stiff rootlets that he suggested were used to fend off animal predators. They were in a non-acidic marine environment, floating on or just below the surface, depending on the maturity of the lycopod trunk (which would sink with age as he noted in some present-day partial analogues from Scandinavia and Switzerland). Surprisingly, he believed the upward-pointing rootlets on the lycopod stigmarian root were exposed to the air (while believing the downward ones were immersed in a muck). The coal-forming floating forests, which Kuntze dubbed “silvomarine”, had to have been washed into place, according to him. His arguments were based on the disturbances of the flora forming the base of them as well as their apparently having been laid down on limestones (including a Devonian one in Russia), shales, granites, gneisses, slates, and other silicate stones. Finally, according to Kuntze, the flora and fauna extinctions of this period were due to total habitat destruction of the silvomarine environment. Kuntze is to be credited with not having followed the English lawyer Lyell’s propensity to apply local or coastal observations to continent-sized coal deposits. However, like Lyell and the English-language geologists, he steered clear of mechanical or physical calculations (despite having applied quantitative chemical analyses in his reasoning). Statistical arguments were absent from his whole argument. Generally speaking, any consensus about the origin of coal tended to be confined within narrow, almost national boundaries. The English and American scientific communities held in situ (autochthonous) interpretations of the origin of coal while the French and some German scientists held the floated-in view (allochthonous). It would be a long time before experimental evidence would be found to clarify this question. 21
Early geological researchers sought to explain the origin of the coal measures in terms of modern depositional environments that involved geological processes that operated over eons of time (conforming to an historical and cultural deist milieu, which seems to have been a major driving force). Yet the evidence that was uncovered from the Carboniferous coal measures presented more and more difficulties within their framework of thinking. Problems that presented themselves included the incredible biodensity of fossils in the coal measures coupled with a lack of biodiversity; the disarticulation of the fossils coupled with their excellent preservation; the separation of different parts of the same object, such as roots and trunks, into different stratigraphic layers. Other anomalies included the presence of marine fossils in supposedly terrestrial deposits, the immense lateral geographical extent of the coal seams, the high purity of the coal seams with minimal contamination from mud and sand, and the inability to find an analogous modern environment. As the early geologists uncovered this disturbing array of anomalies that contradicted their expectations, they resorted to secondary hypotheses. It led to conflicts between the English-speaking geologists (of England and America) and the geologists on the Continent. While the hypotheses developed have today become part of the standard explanation for the origin of coal measure, they are still inadequate to account for the evidence and have in no way been resolved over time. Quite the contrary: the more the problem is studied (and despite a large quantity of solid work done to elucidate the geochemistry of the situation) the greater the apparent discrepancies seem. This leads to the conclusion that the problem is with the interpretive paradigm. The predicament geologists have gotten themselves into over this origin question arises from their propensity to put forth qualitative and premature hypotheses. Lack of quantitative calculations, statistical tests, and experimentation is also a major factor. We are now at the place where we need to consider geological processes that are qualitatively different and of a larger scale than the pioneers of the discipline were prepared to consider. In other words, the paradigm needs updating.
This article has been kindly reviewed by Barry Lee Woolley. Joshua A. Woolley provided the reference information necessary for the cantilevered-beam-analogue-of-a-lycopod- trunk calculation.
1. Later, in the United States, geologist Alexander Winchell proposed the name “Mississippian” in 1869 for the mainly limestone Lower Carboniferous strata exposed along the upper Mississippi River drainage region, and after that, in 1891, Henry S. Williams suggested “Pennsylvanian” for the coal-bed containing Upper Carboniferous. These terms were subsequently used by American geologists and paleontologists in place of the one Carboniferous System used in Europe. Agreed-upon adjustments in stratigraphic boundaries have brought the Early Carboniferous and the Upper or Later Carboniferous into alignment with the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian, respectively. 2. Often times a major part of the plant which has become a form genera (viz. Lepidodendron ) has come to designate the whole plant. 3. Williamson, C.W., A monograph on the morphology and histology of Stigmaria ficoides , London Palaeontographical Society , p. 12, 1887. 4. If a lycopod be modeled as a cantilevered 30-meter-long circular wood cylinder, it will fail in 130 km/hr [80 miles per hour] winds. The failure will not be in bending induced compression, but in the associated shear. The failure will be at its full circular base. This may be a hint as to why Stigmaria are usually separated from their fern tree trunks.There are a variety of empirical formulas that give the force of wind on a vertical cylinder, all of them giving nearly identical answers. One of the simplest is F = APC d , where F is the force in pounds per square foot, A is the projected area of the item in square feet, P is the wind pressure in pounds per square foot given by P = 0.00256 V 2 , where V is the horizontal ideal sustained wind speed given in miles per hour, and C d is 1.2 for a long cylinder (though more likely to be 1.0 for mature lycopods). If P and C d were to be changed to P = 0.004 V 2 and C d = 0.67 (again for a cylinder),
Is the geological column a global sequence? Michael J. Oard

Creationist geologists are not yet agreed over whether the geological column represents an exact sequence of Flood events or not. Local stratigraphic sections seem to line up with the general order of the geological column at hundreds of locations around the world. But there are many problems with the details. For example, 1) the geological column is a vertical or stratigraphic representation abstracted from rock units that are mainly found laterally adjacent to each other in the field, 2) new fossil discoveries continue to expand fossil stratigraphic ranges, 3) different names are given to the same or a similar organism when found in “ different-aged ” strata, 4) taxonomic manipulation, 5) anomalous fossils, and 6) out-of-order fossils. These problems mean that geologists should be cautious about how they relate the geological column to the Flood.
The question of how the geological column fits into Flood geology and the order of events before, during, and after the Flood is quite controversial within creationism. Some creationists advocate that the geological column is an exact representation of the events of the Flood and possibly post-Flood deposition, minus the uniformitarian timescale. In other words, the Cambrian is early in the Flood, followed by the Ordovician, etc., all over the world according to the exact order of the geological column. In that scheme, Mesozoic would be considered middle Flood or late Flood, depending upon where one places the Flood/post-Flood boundary, and the Cenozoic would be either late Flood or post-Flood. Is this claim true or just taken on faith? How was the column developed ? To demonstrate that the geological column is a global sequence, four steps are necessary: (1) develop local columns for small areas, (2) tie local columns into a regional-or subcontinental-scale column, (3) integrate local and regional columns into a continental-scale column and (4) develop the overreaching global geological column. Presumably the first and second steps could be fairly straightforward, if the geology is uncomplicated and the lithology of the strata can be traced for long distances. But, in areas of tectonics, overthrusts, and facies changes, the development of even a local column may be difficult or nearly impossible. The third and fourth steps become much more difficult since lithologies and fossils cannot be traced across continents and from continent to continent. It would seem that the task grows by orders of magnitude at these last two stages, becoming more hypothetical the greater the area of extrapolation. Woodmorappe noted: “As one moves from local all the way to global correlation by fossils, correlations become increasingly less empirical and more conceptual. This is because there are progressively greater differences (such as lithology, local fossil succession, and overall faunal character) as one moves even further geographically from a reference section in the type area.” 1 The geological column was first developed at a local or regional scale before it was extrapolated to a global scale. The geological column was first set up in England, the Alps of Europe, and the Ural Mountains of Russia based on a number of assumptions. 2 It is possible that the formations in England may be well-behaved vertically and horizontally (but this should be checked), so that the part of the column developed in England may be generally accurate. I question how well the Alps and the Permian from the Ural Mountains fit into the original geological column because of their distance from England. Although it is claimed that evolution was not a guiding principle for the construction of the geological column in the early 1800s, the formations were nonetheless pigeonholed into slots based on fossil succession. In other words, the original column was not necessarily developed from lithology but mainly by a succession of index fossils. Index fossils are organisms that are assumed to have spread over much of the world and lived only a short time. Yes, “catastrophists” generally developed the column, but these catastrophists believed in multiple catastrophes in which the Genesis Flood was just the last and accounted for only the surficial “diluvium”. Some of these catastrophists would be considered progressive creationists today, but others eventually succumbed completely to uniformitarianism. Fossil succession over long periods of time was the guiding principle, which essentially is the same as evolution. When biological evolution came on the scene, fossils succession became evolutionary progression with time. As it later turned out, much of the “diluvium” was the result of glaciation. So, the Genesis Flood, after first being relegated to producing only the surficial layer, was then rejected entirely by most scientists in the 1800s. Some scientists and theologians held onto a local or tranquil flood, although Scripture is abundantly clear that the Flood was catastrophic and covered the entire earth.
Adapted from: Oard, M., The geological column is a general flood order with many exceptions; in: Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J. (eds), The Geologic Column: Perspectives Within Diluvial Geology , Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, ch. 7, pp. 99–119, 2006; with permission from the Creation Research Society.

Many people believe index fossils were supplemented by radiometric dating in the 1900s, but index fossils continue to have preeminence in dating. Radiometric dates must agree with the geological column, or the radiometric dates are assumed wrong (or reinterpreted) for various reasons. 3 As a result of this circular reasoning, there are countless problems in radiometric dating. 4,5 A new creationist research project, called RATE (Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth), has shown that in some instances the millions or billions of years are very likely the result of accelerated radiometric decay on a young earth. 6 Even if the fossil succession is more or less accurate for England, the question of the validity of the geological column really boils down to how well the original fossil order from England represents a worldwide order. This question must be answered empirically. The literature indicates that a general order seems to exist but problems occur in the details. This does not imply that an evolutionary order exists, but it is a burial sequence during the Genesis Flood. Local columns show general order The justification for the global column is that the small number of index fossils in any one area still line up vertically in their expected order. Of course, creationists should verify this vertical order, especially in view of the problems discussed below. Trilobites and dinosaurs, organisms from different environments, illustrate the concept of a vertical fossil relationship. If every outcrop shows dinosaurs always superimposed above trilobites, we can have general confidence that this relationship holds as a worldwide relationship in the Flood. Furthermore, if we find a region with just trilobites, we can surmise that the strata were laid down earlier than strata containing dinosaurs in another region. Because of the many problems listed below, there may be exceptions. So, in this case dinosaurs above trilobites would be considered a general Flood order. Dinosaurs and trilobites lived in quite different environments, and we would expect that to be reflected in the vertical order of their fossils in the Flood. However, I would be more cautious in developing a vertical order with organisms from the same or similar environments, such as various types of trilobites, cephalopods, foraminifers, diatoms, etc. They mostly live in a marine environment and during the Flood could have become vertically superimposed in any order, unless there were other factors that could cause systematic vertical relationships, such as ecological zonation, horizontal separation, etc. The general order of the geological column (Paleozoic below Mesozoic below Cenozoic) seems to be correct on a broad scale in north central Wyoming and south central Montana. Figure 1. Tilted Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata at the northwest edge of the Bighorn Basin at Clark Canyon adjacent to the southeast Beartooth Mountains. Figure 2. The erosional remnant of Red Butte on the south rim of the Grand Canyon (view west from Forest Road 320).

Paleozoic strata with trilobites, brachiopods, etc. and Mesozoic strata with dinosaur fossils are commonly found in the mountains, while Cenozoic strata with fossil mammals predominantly occupy the basins and valleys. Paleozoic and Mesozoic strata are often tilted at a high angle at a basin edge against granite intrusions and uplifts of sedimentary rocks in the northern Rocky Mountains (figure 1), while the Cenozoic strata are nearly flat-lying in the center of the basins. The uplifted Bighorn and Beartooth Mountains and the Bighorn Basin in between are a good example. The Cenozoic strata of the Bighorn Basin and the adjacent Clarks Fork Basin to the north are well known for their fossil mammals. These Cenozoic basin fills postdate the strata in the surrounding mountains. Assuming that the Paleozoic and Mesozoic have typical index fossils for those periods, the order of the fossils lines up with the geological column in this area. Another example is the Grand Staircase in northern Arizona and southern Utah. Although the Grand Staircase is both a vertical and horizontal relationship, in that the Mesozoic strata lie predominantly to the north of the exposed Paleozoic strata of Grand Canyon, there is strong evidence that the Mesozoic strata once lay above the Paleozoic Grand Canyon. The Mesozoic strata were later eroded, leaving remnants such as 300 m-high Red Butte along the southeast rim of the Grand Canyon (figure 2). However, I would question the Cenozoic age of the Wasatch Formation on top of the Mesozoic section in Utah. I believe this formation was assigned to the Cenozoic based on the assumption that strata on top of Mesozoic must be early Cenozoic, and since the Wasatch Formation crops out in basins to the north, the top strata likely were simply rubberstamped as the Cenozoic Wasatch Formation. However, the top formation of the Grand Staircase is no longer considered to be the Wasatch Formation; it is the Claron Formation. 7 However, the Claron Formation is still considered to be early Cenozoic. The unique erosional forms of Bryce Canyon were carved in the Claron Formation (figure 3). Fossils in the Claron Formation are not abundant, 8 so it is unlikely that fossils can be used to determine its age. If the formation was actually “Mesozoic”, then only two of the three Phanerozoic eras of the geological column are represented in the Grand Staircase. I question the finer time divisions within the Paleozoic or Mesozoic, such as the division between the Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian, etc. The Paleozoic commonly contains marine deposits (one exception being the claim that the Coconino sandstone is a desert deposit, which is debatable). The environmental interpretation is based on marine fossils such as trilobite tracks (figure 4) and nautiloids (figure 5) found in the Grand Canyon and at other locations. It is likely these organisms lived before the Flood, and so the Paleozoic represents a marine burial sequence, possibly by ecological zonation. Between the Cambrian Muav
Figure 5. Nautiloid from the Grand Canyon. Figure 3. Unique erosional forms in Claron Formation of Bryce Canyon National Park.
Figure 4. Trilobite tracks from the Grand Canyon (arrows). Photo courtesy of Tom Vail
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Limestone and the Devonian Temple
Butte Limestone, the Ordovician and Silurian periods, with their 120 Ma of geological time, are missing. The contact between the Muav and Temple Butte is a disconformity, a break in deposition or an erosional event between parallel beds. Figure 6 shows a fold at the disconformity, implying little if any time gap, because the lower limestone formation should have already been lithified and thus could not have been folded parallel to the upper formation. If the geological column is an exact Flood sequence, this disconformity would represent a period of erosion or nondeposition between the Muav and Temple Butte Limestones during the Flood. However, if the geological column is merely a general order, there is no reason to suggest a period of nondeposition or erosion between the two limestones. The specific index fossils for those periods simply were not deposited. I might add that the Ordovician and Silurian are also considered absent in practically all of Montana, 9 likely because of missing index fossils. If someone found an index fossil for the Ordovician, you can be sure that strata now labeled Cambrian or Devonian would become Ordovician or Silurian. Reed 10 advocated that creationists with geological knowledge become familiar with the geology and paleontology of their local area for eventual regional scale investigation. We can focus just on the rock record and develop our own local geological columns. In this way we would be able to analyze the rock record from each local area and relate it to a global Flood model. Problems for the geological column Despite propaganda by evolutionary and uniformitarian scientists that the fossil order is an exact global order with time, there are numerous problems and anomalies that make this assertion questionable. I can only briefly mention these problems, since they could be amplified into a whole book. 1) Vertical sequence of geological column is often horizontal in the field Many think that the geological column is a vertical, onion-skinned model, which has the same vertical sequence in most areas. Actually, the vertical fossil scheme is mostly derived from lateral relationships. The reason for this is because only a small number of the ten Phanerozoic geological periods are represented as a vertical sequence in any local area, defined for analysis purposes by Figure 6. Disconformity between the Muav Limestone and Temple Butte Limestone in the Grand Canyon. Notice how folding affects both formations. Woodmorappe as a 406 by 406 km square. 11 Two-thirds of Earth’s land surface has five or fewer of the ten geological periods in place. Only 15–20% of Earth’s land surface has even three geological periods in correct consecutive order. This is a conservative estimate in favor of the geological column because Woodmorappe used any suggestion of a period being in a square as evidence that the period existed in that particular square. His squares are so large that it was difficult to establish a single vertical sequence because of tectonics, facies changes, etc., and many of these local geological columns should be verified lithologically. Regardless, the global and continental columns mainly represent a horizontal sequence. Unless there are better empirical correlations, it may be difficult to know the exact time sequence in the Flood over such large areas. For instance, the late Paleozoic is well represented by coal from trees such as lycopods in the Appalachian Mountains, while in Montana and Wyoming the coal (figure 7) contains angiosperms and gymnosperms. The coal in Montana and Wyoming is dated as “early Cenozoic”, much younger than the Appalachian lycopods in the geological column. But, the different trees really represent a horizontal separation. Whether or not the different plants making up the coals represent a time sequence in the Flood must be determined empirically. The horizontal relationship of index fossils is also a global phenomenon. 1 In a study of 34 index fossils, Woodmorappe found that only rarely are more than a third and never more than a half of these index fossils simultaneously present in any 320 km-diameter region on Earth. And even those index fossils found in a particular region are rarely vertically superimposed. The problem is that it is doubtful enough that these local relationships can be traced horizontally to know whether the global geological column really represents a vertical sequence. For example, the coals from the Appalachians and from the Montana/Wyoming area could have been laid down at the same time in the Flood. So, the global geological column is built by extrapolating periods and index fossils from each area into a global sequence. How well this global sequence lines up with reality and represents a Flood order requires much more research, but I am skeptical that each period in the geological column represents a consistent part of an absolute sequence of events in the Flood model. 2) Changing fossil ranges in the geological column In order to discuss fossil order, we need to know the three-dimensional distribution of fossils. Fossils come from scattered outcrops and boreholes. We know very little of the subsurface distribution of fossils. The more scientists examine the rocks, the more the ranges of fossils are extended in the geological column. 12 For instance, organisms thought to have been extinct for millions of years sometimes are found alive in remote locations on Earth. These organisms are called living fossils. Logically, these organisms must have lived during later geological periods where their fossils have not been discovered. If this applies to many other organisms, fossil ranges for many organisms can be greatly extended upward toward the present. One of the most recent outstanding examples of a living fossil is the Wollemi Pine (figure 8), found in a gorge in the Blue Mountains, 200 km west of Sydney, Australia. 13 The Wollemi Pine was thought extinct since the Jurassic period— about 150 Ma ago on the uniformitarian timescale. This means that the Wollemi Pine should exist in strata between the Jurassic and the present. One researcher described the discovery like “finding a live dinosaur”. 13 Obviously, no evolution of the Wollemi pine has occurred for an alleged 150 Ma. Given its absence in strata younger than “Jurassic”, those 150 Ma may never have existed. One would expect abundant Wollemi pine fossils during this 150 Ma period. Catastrophic burial about 4,500 years ago is a better explanation for living fossils, such as the Wollemi pine. A sponge, called Nucha? vancouverensis sp. nov., was found in the upper Triassic of Vancouver Island. 14 Surprisingly, this sponge is nearly identical to one previously found only in the Middle Cambrian of western New South Wales, Australia, which was named Nucha naucum . 15 The fossil has not been found in strata within the supposed 300 Ma intervening years. Assuming that the paleontological analysis on these sponges is correct, the range of Nucha is significantly expanded upward in the geological column, and one wonders whether the 300 Ma between the Cambrian and the Permian are real. The above situations are not rare. 14 These examples should make us aware that paleontologists do not know the three-dimensional distribution of fossils, and that the many millions of years between the same or similar fossils may not exist. Fossil ranges have also been extended downward in the geological column. For instance, vertebrates have been pushed back into the Cambrian 16,17 where 50% to possibly as high as 85% of all phyla originated in what is now called the Cambrian Big Bang. 18 Sharks have been pushed back 25 Ma into the Late Ordovician. 19 Vascular plants have also been pushed back 25 Ma into the Early Silurian. 19 Based on tracks, arthropods invaded the land 40 Ma earlier (Late Cambrian) than previously thought. 20,21 The discovery of a possible winged insect would push back the origin of winged insects and flight by more than 80 Ma into the early Silurian, which in turn has caused the supposed first land plants to be pushed back into the Ordovician. 22,23 If their analysis of organic molecules is correct, evolutionists believe that they have pushed back the origin of eukaryote cells 1 to 2.7 Ga ago in the late
Figure 8. Wollemi Pine from Blue Mountains of New South Wales.
Figure 7. Part of Wyodak coal seam just east of Gillette, Wyoming. Photo by Fritz Geller-Grimm <> 61 Papers JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (1) 2010
Archean. 24,25 This raises interesting questions for both evolutionists and creationists. Where are the remains of all the billions of organisms with eukaryote cells that lived between 2.7 Ga ago and the time of the Cambrian Big Bang (500 Ma ago) in the evolutionary model? Since the molecules were found in sedimentary rocks, does this mean that Archean and Proterozoic sedimentary rocks are from the Flood? 3) Different names for the same or similar fossil from different ages It is not an uncommon phenomenon to find the same or similar fossils in strata of different ages that have been given different names . Very few non-specialists would be aware of this phenomenon. This practice masks the true range of fossils within the geological column. Tosk 26 documented that the same or similar foraminifera are not only given different names when found in strata of different ages, but also are sometimes placed in different superfamilies. Woodmorappe 27 found that much of the stratigraphic order of cephalopods is due to time-stratigraphic concepts and taxonomic manipulation. Both cephalopods and foraminifera are important index fossils. The same situation occurs with plants. Rees et al . complain: “Indeed, it is sometimes necessary to ‘side- step’ traditional paleobotanical taxonomy, which is often hindered by political and regional biases (ensuring a highly specialized local but limited global view), as well as stratigraphic biases (with what is effectively the ‘same’ fossil plant type being assigned to a different genus or species depending upon its age).” 28 4) Taxonomic manipulation Another problem mentioned by Woodmorappe 27 is that slightly different features in cephalopods have been used to date a layer of strata to a different age. These slightly different biological features cause one type of organism to be split into a different species, genera, families, etc. Since taxonomic splitters have had the upper hand in taxonomy, how meaningful are such taxonomic and age manipulations to the geological column? We know that species of living organisms, like dogs and pigeons, have a great morphological variety. How do we know whether the variety found in an extinct organism is not from intraspecies variation? Within creationist biological terms, such variation would be considered within the same Genesis kind or baramin . For example, one type of trilobite might date a layer as Cambrian while a slight change in anatomy in another trilobite in another layer will cause that particular layer to be dated as Silurian. Are they different kinds of trilobites or variations within one kind?
Figure 10. The contact of the Lewis “ overthrust ” northeast of Marias Pass.
Figure 11. Close-up of the contact of the Lewis “ overthrust ” northeast of Marias Pass. There are stringers of Altyn Dolomite in shale below contact.
Figure 9. Lewis “ overthrust ” (arrow) northeast of Marias Pass, Montana (view northeast). The “ Precambrian ” Altyn Dolomite is the light colored layer in the center of the picture while the Appekunny Argillite is the dark colored rock above. “ Cretaceous ” shale lies below the dolomite. Note the horizontal beds of the shale, which are either undeformed or only mildly deformed below the contact. 62 Papers JOURNAL OF CREATION 24 (1) 2010
6) Out-of-order fossils A second type of anomaly in the fossil record is the situation in which “older” fossils are found above rocks that contain “young” fossils. These out-of-order fossils are the opposite of the evolutionary hypothesis. Out-of-order fossils are considered “impossible” by evolutionists, and so are dismissed as the result of overthrusting. An overthrust involves “older” strata being pushed over “younger” strata at an angle less than 45°. Robinson 31 claimed that overthrusts are based on geophysical evidence and not out-of-order fossils. This is true for some, but the Lewis overthrust in Montana and Alberta (figures 9–11) was identified based on fossils. In the Lewis “overthrust”, Precambrian rocks supposedly slid tens of kilometers eastward up a low slope over “Cretaceous” rocks. There is a 900 Ma out-of-order time gap at the Lewis “overthrust”, and this time gap was first based on out- of-order fossils. Bailey Willis 32 first hypothesized the “overthrust” in 1902 after he found “Precambrian crustacean shells” in the upper block above the “Cretaceous” strata. The Lewis Overthrust may or may not be a true overthrust, but the determination should be made by geological and geophysical methods and not by fossils. Another famous example of an overthrust is the Heart Mountain detachment in north central Wyoming. It is not a true overthrust but the upper block actually slid down a slight decline and broke up into many smaller blocks. That is why it is now called a detachment fault. Heart Mountain north of Cody, Wyoming, is the most famous example (figure 12). The Heart Mountain Detachment is real and there is evidence for motion, such as broken rock at the detachment surface. 33 So in this case, there is a structural explanation for the out-of-order fossils. A modern analog for the Heart Mountain Detachment 34 was discovered when large blocks of lava detached from Hawaii and slid into the deep ocean. 35 In the South Kona Landslide, one huge block broke up into large pieces, up to 700 m high and 11.5 by 7.5 km in area. It slid up to 80 km oceanward—the last 40 km over relatively flat ocean bottom. These blocks are larger than the Heart Mountain Detachment blocks. Most uniformitarian geologists believe that the Heart Mountain Detachment was catastrophic, occurring within a matter of minutes or hours. 33 In such cases, there is evidence of overthrusting or reverse faulting. A reverse fault is the case where a block is shoved up over other rock at an angle greater than 45°. I believe that there is evidence of thick-skinned reverse faults and even overthrusts. For instance, in some regions of the Bighorn and northeast Beartooth Mountains of south central Montana and north central Wyoming, granite has been pushed east or northeast up an approximately 30° slope. 36,37 Such thick-skinned (granite is involved) overthrusts are supported by seismic profiles and wells These problems make it difficult to take seriously the separation of the periods within the Paleozoic and Mesozoic. The Paleozoic may simply represent mostly marine deposition during the Flood. Trilobites buried at nearly the same time are assigned from the Cambrian to the Permian in the uniformitarian system. On the other hand, the organisms of the Mesozoic are much different, and generally above Paleozoic fossils where they are found vertically superimposed. So, the order of the geological column seems like a general sequence from a Flood depositional point of view, but with lots of exceptions in the details. 5) Anomalous fossils Evolutionists often tell us that there are no contradictions to the evolutionary fossil order. However, they have to explain many anomalies in order to make the geological column “consistent”. One type of anomaly is finding two fossils of different ages in the same layer. If the evolutionist cannot extend the stratigraphic range of the fossils, he must determine which fossil represents the true “age”. If the strata are considered young, the “old” fossil is simply assumed to have been “reworked”, eroded from “much older” strata and incorporated into younger sediments. Often, their only criterion for reworking is an expected evolutionary order rather than the condition of the fossil. However, if “old” organisms are reworked into “young” strata, wouldn’t the “old” fossil be pulverized? In the opposite case, a “young” fossil is found in “old” strata, and evolutionists assume that the “younger” organism was buried within “old” sediment and fossilized. This is called “downwash”. This could happen if a “young” organism became trapped and fossilized in a cave, sinkhole, or bog within “old” sediment or sedimentary rock. If the strata remain unconsolidated until after the “young” organism is buried, it would be difficult for the “old” organism to have remain unfossilized for millions of years. Whether a fossil is considered reworked or down-washed should not depend on preconceived ideas about age or fossil succession; there should be evidence for such an event. Woodmorappe 29 compiled 200 published instances of anomalous fossils from the literature. This was not an exhaustive search. Most of these instances involved microfossils, which is why I am especially skeptical of the biostratigraphy of various microfossil groups, such as foraminifers and diatoms. Taxonomic manipulation, along with reworking, casts doubt on the use of microfossils as index fossils. Anomalous fossil occurrences are not rare. 30 Furthermore, if evolutionists under-report examples of anomalous fossils, they may be quite common, while evidence for reworking or downwash is rare! It seems that reworking is just an ad hoc explanation to make the geological column “consistent”. The real impact of anomalous fossils would be to broaden the fossil range in the geological column, thereby reducing confidence in index fossils.
drilled on the eastern edge of the granite that pass into sedimentary rock. The fault zone of the Beartooth thrust consists of 21 m of shattered granite above 37 m of severely faulted sedimentary rocks. 38 Such evidence should also exist with thin-skinned “overthrusts”, in which sedimentary rock is pushed over sedimentary rock. However, I have seen a number of overthrusts in Montana and southern Alberta where there is usually little or no evidence for displacements of km to tens of km uphill over a slope less than 45°. 39 Some “overthrusts” display a reversed metamorphic grade in which the upper block is more highly metamorphosed than the lower block. Metamorphism is supposed to increase with increasing depth. So, this is support for the overthrust concept in these cases. However, it is possible that the metamorphic grade associated with “overthrusts” could be chemically caused 40 or caused by the migration of heat and fluids during deformation. 41 Overthrusts, if they are real, could possibly be explained by catastrophic underwater emplacements during the Flood. Creationists need a comprehensive analysis of overthrusts. The fact is that there are hundreds of alleged overthrusts and they seem to occur in most mountain ranges of the world. Yet mountains are usually the few places to observe a thick vertical sequence and so one is forced to conclude that out-of-order strata are common. A real overthrust should show abundant physical evidence. Relying just on fossils is unreasonable. If these strata cannot be tied to a real overthrust, then the fossil distribution in the geological column is contrary to evolutionary predictions. Conclusion In order to show that the geological column is an exact sequence for either the uniformitarian or Flood paradigm one must first develop local and regional columns and then show that these have a continental and global consistency. However, the local columns, which are more empirical, become more theoretical and speculative as one extrapolates to larger areas. As far as the broad arrangement of fossils is concerned, the geological column seems to be generally consistent where observed in vertical sections in the western United States. This gives some confidence that the general order can be applied elsewhere in the world. But when we get into the fine detail of the geological column such as the divisions of the eras, there is much reason for skepticism, especially where the environment of the fossils is similar. At any one location, the geological column seems to be less a vertical sequence and more a broad horizontal sequence. This sequence is based on index fossils from scattered outcrops that likely are difficult to correlate lithologically. The validity of such fossil correlations is suspect because fossil discoveries continue to expand fossil ranges in the geological column. Furthermore, different names are given to the same or a similar fossil found in strata of different “ages”. Correct taxonomic classification would likely expand the time-range of fossils even more. All this makes the use of index fossils for dating within the fine divisions of the column highly suspect. If the observed fossil distribution were the only consideration then the time-range of fossils would be expanded even further due to several other problems including taxonomic manipulations, anomalous fossils, and out-of-order fossils. The overall effect of these problems and the way they are treated by the paleontological community is difficult to quantify but there is no doubt that they result in an unwarranted reduction in the time-range of fossils. Without these problems the time-range for index fossils used to date strata would be even greater, making the fine divisions within the geological column even more questionable. These issues and problems should make geologists cautious about applying the geological column to the Flood.

1. Woodmorappe, J., A diluviological treatise on the stratigraphic separation of fossils; in: Studies in Flood Geology , 2 nd ed., Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 23–75, p. 24, 1999. 2. Mortenson, T., The historical development of the old-earth geological time-scale; in: Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J. (Eds.), The Geologic Column: Perspectives Within Diluvial Geology , Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, ch. 2, pp. 7–30, 2006. 3. McKee, B., Cascadia: the Geological Evolution of the Pacific Northwest , McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York, pp. 24–30, 1972. 4. Woodmorappe, J., The Mythology of Modern Dating Methods , Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, CA, 1999.
Figure 12. Heart Mountain, northwest Bighorn Basin. The light colored strata at the top of Heart Mountain are “ Paleozoic ” limestone and dolomite, which lies on top of valley fill sediments (view north).
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5. Vardiman, L., Snelling, A.A. and Chaffin E.F. (Eds.), Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth: A Young-Earth Creationist Research Initiative , Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX and Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, 2000. 6. Vardiman, L., Snelling, A.A. and Chaffin E.F. (Eds), Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth: Results of a Young-Earth Creationist Research Initiative , Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX and Creation Research Society, Chino Valley, AZ, 2005. 7. Harris, A.G., Tuttle, E. and Tuttle, S.D., Geology of National Parks , (5 th ed.), Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, Dubuque, IA, pp. 43–54, 1997. 8. Harris et al ., ref. 7, pp. 52–53. 9. Perry, E.S., Montana in the Geologic Past , Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology Bulletin 26, Butte, MT, p. 24, 1962. 10. Reed, J.K., Strategic stratigraphy: reclaiming the rock record! Journal of Creation 19 (2):119–127, 2005. 11. Woodmorappe, J., The essential nonexistence of the evolutionary- uniformitarian geological column: a quantitative assessment; in: Studies in Flood Geology , (2 nd ed.), Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 105–130, 1999. 12. Woodmorappe, J., An anthology of matters significant to creationism and diluviology: report 1; in: Studies in Flood Geology , (2 nd ed.), Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 135–136, 1999. 13. Wieland, C., Sensational Australian tree ... like “finding a live dinosaur”, Creation 17 (2):13, 1995. 14. Stanley, G. D., Triassic sponge from Vancouver Island: possible holdover from the Cambrian, Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 35 :1037–1043, 1998. 15. Oard, M.J., How well do paleontologists know fossil distributions? Journal of Creation 14 (1):7–8, 2000. 16. Oard, M.J., Evolution pushed further into the past, Journal of Creation 10 (2):171–172, 1996. 17. Oard, M.J., Origin of vertebrates confirmed in the Early Cambrian, Journal of Creation 18 (1):10–11, 2004. 18. Meyer, S.C., Ross, M., Nelson, P. and Chien, P., The Cambrian explosion: biology’s big bang; in: Campbell, J.A. and Meyer, S.C. (Eds.), Darwin, Design, and Public Education , Michigan State University Press, East Lansing, MI, pp. 323–402, 2003. 19. Oard, M.J., Evolution pushed further into the past, Journal of Creation 10 (2):171–172, 1996. 20. MacNaughton, R.B., Cole, J.M., Dalrymple, R.W., Braddy, S.J., Briggs, D.E.G. and Lukie, T.D., First steps on land: arthropod trackways in Cambrian-Ordovician aeolian sandstone, southeastern Ontario, Canada, Geology 30 :391–394, 2002. 21. Oard, M.J., Arthropods supposedly invaded land 40 million years earlier, Journal of Creation 17 (2):3–4, 2003. 22. Engel, M.S. and Grimaldi, D.A., New light shed on the oldest insect, Nature 427 :627–630, 2004. 23. Oard, M.J., “Evolutionary origins” continue to be pushed back in time, Journal of Creation 18 (3):7, 2004. 24. Brocks, J.J., Logan, G.A., Buick, R. and Summons, R.E., Achaean molecular fossils and the early rise of eukaryotes, Science 285 :1033–1036, 1999. 25. Oard, M.J., Supposed eukaryote evolution pushed back one billion years, Journal of Creation 15 (1):4, 2001. 26. Tosk, T., Foraminifers in the fossil record: implications for an ecological zonation model, Origins 15 (1):8–18, 1988. 27. Woodmorappe, J., The cephalopods in the creation and the universal Deluge; in: Studies in Flood Geology , 2 nd ed., Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 179–197, 1999. 28. Rees, P.M., Ziegler, A.M. and Valdes, P.J., Jurassic phytogeography and climates: new data and model comparisons; in: Huber, B.T., MacLeod, K.G. and Wing, S.L. (Eds.), Warm Climates in Earth History , Cambridge University Press, London, pp. 297–318, 2000; p. 301. 29. Woodmorappe, J., An anthology of matters significant to creationist and diluviology: report 2; in: Studies in Flood Geology , 2 nd ed., Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 87–92, 1999. 30. Woodmorappe, ref. 29, pp. 92–94. 31. Robinson, S.J., Can Flood geology explain the fossil record? Journal of Creation 10 (1):32–69, 1996; p. 35. 32. Willis, B., Stratigraphy and structure, Lewis and Livingstone Ranges, Montana, Geological Society of America Bulletin 13 :305–352, 1902. 33. Beutner, E.C. and Gerbi, G.P., Catastrophic emplacement of the Heart Mountain block slide, Wyoming and Montana, USA, GSA Bulletin 117 :724–735, 2005. 34. Oard, M.J., Possible analogue for the Heart Mountain Detachment, Journal of Creation 10 (1):3–4, 1996. 35. Moore, J.G., Bryan, W.B., Beeson, M.H. and Normark, W.R., Giant blocks in the South Kona Landslide, Hawaii, Geology 23 :125–128, 1995. 36. Wise, D.U., Laramide structures in basement and cover of the Beartooth uplift near Red Lodge, Montana, AAPG Bulletin 84 (3):360–375, 2000. 37. Stone, D.S., New interpretations of the Piney Creek thrust and associated Granite Ridge tear fault, northeastern Bighorn Mountains, Wyoming, Rocky Mountain Geology 38 (2):205–235, 2003. 38. Wise, ref. 36, p. 366. 39. Woodmorappe, ref. 29, pp. 86–87. 40. Silvestru, E., personal communication. 41. Hubbard, M.S., Ductile shear as a cause of inverted metamorphism: example from the Nepal Himalaya, Journal of Geology 104 :493–499, 1996.
6. Michael J. Oard has an M.S. in Atmospheric Science from the University of Washington and is now retired after working as a professional meteorologist with the US National Weather Service in Montana for 30 years. He is the author of An Ice Age Caused by the Genesis Flood, Ancient Ice Ages or Gigantic Submarine Landslides ? , Frozen in Time and Flood by Design . He serves on the board of the Creation Research Society .
Evidences for a young age of the earth and universe
by Don Batten

No scientific method can prove the age of the universe or the earth. All calculated ages involve making assumptions about the past: the starting time of the ‘clock’, the speed of the clock and that the clock was never disturbed.

There is no independent natural clock against which we can test the assumptions. For example, the amount of cratering on the moon, based on currently observed cratering rates, suggests that the moon is quite old. However, to draw this conclusion we have to assume that the rate of cratering has always been the same as it is now. There is now good reason to think that cratering might have been quite intense in the past, so the craters do not indicate an old age at all.
No scientific method can prove the age of the universe or the earth.

Age calculations assume the rates of change of processes in the past were the same as we observe today—called the principle of uniformitarianism. If the age calculated disagrees with what the investigator thinks the age should be, he/she concludes that the assumptions did not apply in this case, and adjusts them accordingly. If the calculated result gives an acceptable age, the investigator accepts it.

Examples of young ages listed here also rely upon the same principle of uniformitarianism. Long-age proponents will dismiss any evidence for a young earth by arguing that the assumptions about the past do not apply in these cases. In other words, age is not really a matter of scientific observation but rather an argument over our assumptions about the unobserved past.

We cannot prove the assumptions behind the evidences presented here. However, such a wide range of different phenomena, all suggesting much younger ages than are generally assumed, makes a strong case for questioning those ages (about 14 billion years for the universe and 4.5 billion years for the solar system).
Such a wide range of different phenomena, all suggesting much younger ages than are generally assumed, makes a strong case for questioning those ages

A number of the evidences don’t give an estimate of age but challenge the assumption of slow-and-gradual uniformitarianism, upon which all deep-time dating methods depend. They thus bring into question the vast ages claimed.

Creationist scientists discovered many of the young age indicators when researching things that were supposed to ‘prove’ long ages. There is a lesson here: when skeptics throw up some challenge to the Bible’s timeline, don’t fret over it. Eventually that supposed ‘proof’ will likely be overturned and turn out to be evidence for a younger creation. On the other hand, with further research some of the evidences listed here might turn out to be ill-founded. Such is the nature of historical science, because we cannot do experiments on past events.1

Science entails observation, and the only reliable means of telling the age of anything is by the testimony of a reliable witness who observed the events. The Bible claims to be the communication of the only One who witnessed the events of Creation: the Creator Himself. As such, the Bible is the only reliable means of knowing the age of the creation.2

In the end, the Bible will stand vindicated and those who deny its testimony will be confounded. That same Bible also tells us of God’s judgment on those who reject His right to rule over them. But it also tells us of His willingness to forgive us for our rebellious behaviour. The coming of Jesus Christ (who was intimately involved in the creation process at the beginning (John 1:1–3)) into the world, has made this possible (see p. 18).

Here are 18 evidences from various fields of science. See for 101 evidences (literally!).

 Lazarus bacteria—bacteria revived from salt inclusions supposedly 250 million years old, suggest the salt is much younger.3
 The decay in the human genome due to multiple slightly harmful mutations added each generation is consistent with an origin several thousand years ago.4
 Dinosaur blood cells, blood vessels and proteins are not consistent with their supposed age, but make more sense if the fossils are young.5
 Thick, tightly bent rock strata with no signs of melting or fracturing. These wipe out hundreds of millions of years of time and are consistent with extremely rapid formation during the biblical Flood.6
 Polystrate fossils—for example, broken vertical tree trunks in northern and southern hemisphere coal that traverse many strata indicate rapid burial and accumulation of the organic material that became coal, eliminating many millions of years.7
 Flat gaps—where one rock layer sits on another rock layer but with supposedly millions of years of time missing, yet the contact plane lacks significant erosion. E.g. Redwall Limestone / Tapeats Sandstone in the Grand Canyon (more than a 100 million year gap).8
 The amount of salt in the world’s oldest lake contradicts its supposed age and suggests an age consistent with its formation after Noah’s Flood.9
 Erosion at Niagara Falls and similar places is consistent with a few thousand years since the Flood.10
 Measured rates of stalactite and stalagmite growth in limestone caves are consistent with an age of several thousand years.11
 Carbon-14 in all coal suggests that the coal is only thousands of years old.12
 The amount of helium, a product of decay of radioactive elements, retained in zircons in granite is consistent with an age of 6,000±2000 years, not the supposed billions of years.13
 The amount of lead in zircons from deep drill cores vs. shallow ones is similar. But there should be less in the deep ones due to the higher heat causing higher diffusion rates over the long ages supposed. If the ages are only thousands of years, this would explain the similarity.14
 Evidence of recent volcanic activity on Earth’s moon contradicts the supposed vast age—it should have long since cooled if it were billions of years old.15
 Presence of magnetic fields on Uranus and Neptune, which should be “dead” according to evolutionary long-age beliefs. Assuming a solar system age of thousands of years, physicist Russell Humphreys accurately predicted the strengths of the magnetic fields of Uranus and Neptune.16
 Methane on Titan, Saturn’s largest moon—it should all be gone in just 10,000 years because of UV-induced breakdown to ethane. And the large quantities of ethane are not there either.17
 Speedy stars are consistent with a young age for the universe. For example, many stars in the dwarf galaxies in the Local Group are moving away from each other at speeds of 10–12 km/s. At these speeds, the stars should have dispersed in 100 million years, which, compared with the supposed 14 billion-year age of the universe, is a short time.18
 Spiral structure in galaxies should be lost in much less than 200 million years. This is inconsistent with their claimed age of many billions of years. The discovery of ‘young’ spiral galaxies highlights the problem of the assumed evolutionary ages.19
 The existence of short-period comets (orbits of less than 200 years), is consistent with an age of the solar system of less than 10,000 years.20

References and notes

 See, Batten, D., ‘It’s not science’, 2002. Return to text.
 Williams, A., The Universe’s Birth Certificate, Creation 30(1):31, 2007, Sarfati, J., Biblical chronogenealogies, Journal of Creation 17(3):14–18, 2003. Return to text.
 Oard, M., Aren’t 250 million year old live bacteria a bit much?, 2001. Return to text.
 Sanford, J., Genetic entropy and the mystery of the genome, Ivan Press, 2005; see: Plant geneticist: ‘Darwinian evolution is impossible’, Creation 30(4):45–47, 2008. Realistic modelling shows that genomes are young, in the order of thousands of years. See Sanford, J., et al., Mendel’s Accountant: A biologically realistic forward-time population genetics program, SCPE 8(2):147–165, 2007; Return to text.
 Wieland, C., Dinosaur soft tissue and protein—even more confirmation!, 2009. Return to text.
 Allen, D., Warped earth, Creation 25(1):40–43, 2002. Return to text.
 Walker, T., Coal: memorial to the Flood, Creation 23(2):22–27, 2001; Wieland, C., Forests that grew on water, Creation 18(1):20–24, 1995. Return to text.
 ‘Millions of years’ are missing (interview with Dr Ariel Roth), Creation 31(2):46–49, 2009. Return to text.
 Williams, A., World’s oldest salt lake only a few thousand years old, Creation 17(2):5, 1995. Return to text.
 Pierce, L., Niagara Falls and the Bible, Creation 22(4):8–13, 2000. Return to text.
 Wieland, C., Caving in to reality, Creation 20(1):14, 1997. Also Q&A on limestone caves; Return to text.
 What about carbon dating? Creation Answers Book chapter 4. Return to text.
 Humphreys, D.R., Young helium diffusion age of zircons supports accelerated nuclear decay, in Vardiman, L., Snelling, A. and Chaffin, E. (eds.), Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth, ICR and CRS, 848 pp., 2005. Return to text.
 Gentry, R., et al., Differential lead retention in zircons: Implications for nuclear waste containment, Science 216(4543):296–298, 1982; DOI: 10.1126/science.216.4543.296. Return to text.
 DeYoung, D.B., Transient lunar phenomena: a permanent problem for evolutionary models of Moon formation, Journal of Creation 17(1):5–6, 2003;; Walker, T., and Catchpoole, D., Lunar volcanoes rock long-age timeframe, Creation 31(3):18, 2009. Return to text.
 See Return to text.
 Anon., Saturnian surprises, Creation 27(3):6. Return to text.
 Bernitt, R., Fast stars challenge big bang origin for dwarf galaxies, Journal of Creation 14(3):5–7, 2000. Return to text.
 McIntosh, A., and Wieland, C., ‘Early’ galaxies don’t fit, Creation 25(2):28–30, 2003. Return to text.
 Faulkner, D., Comets and the age of the solar system, Journal of Creation 11(3):264–273, 1997. Return to text.


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