Intelligent Design News Origin Of Life

Life on Earth at 4.1 billion years ago?

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From the Daily Galaxy:

On Earth, simple life appears to have formed quickly, but it likely took many millions of years for very simple life to evolve the ability to photosynthesize.
“The early Earth certainly wasn’t a hellish, dry, boiling planet; we see absolutely no evidence for that,” said Harrison [UCLA]. “The planet was probably much more like it is today than previously thought.”

UCLA geochemists have found evidence that life likely existed on Earth at least 4.1 billion years ago — 300 million years earlier than previous research suggested. The discovery indicates that life may have begun shortly after the planet formed 4.54 billion years ago.

The new research suggests that life existed prior to the massive bombardment of the inner solar system that formed the moon’s large craters 3.9 billion years ago. More.

<em>Soda</em> <em>Pop</em> Top Art Print At first, we did a double take here, thinking this item was from “Let There Be Light” Devotionals. But, come to think of it, there may be something in the fact that so many of these sources are beginning to sound alike, where origin of life is concerned. French Fries

Origin of life: Something momentous happened 4.5 bya that is not at all like what happens today. And no one knows a thing about it. But there are plenty of stories.

Note: UCLA published a media release in 2015, to the same effect.

UCLA geochemists have found evidence that life likely existed on Earth at least 4.1 billion years ago — 300 million years earlier than previous research suggested. The discovery indicates that life may have begun shortly after the planet formed 4.54 billion years ago.

The research is published today in the online early edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Twenty years ago, this would have been heretical; finding evidence of life 3.8 billion years ago was shocking,” said Mark Harrison, co-author of the research and a professor of geochemistry at UCLA.

Back soon. See also: And once more: Life can arise naturally from chemistry!

Researchers: Bacteria fossils predate the origin of oxygen

Rob Sheldon: Why the sulfur-based life forms never amounted to much

Welcome to “RNA world,” the five-star hotel of origin-of-life theories


What we know and don’t know about the origin of life

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5 Replies to “Life on Earth at 4.1 billion years ago?

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    as to:

    “With the right ingredients, life seems to form very quickly.”

    And yet, despite his assumption that the ‘right ingredients’ must have been present on the early earth, there are no prebiotic chemical signatures in the geologic record for him to appeal to so as to verify his claim

    “We get that evidence from looking at carbon 12 to carbon 13 analysis. And it tells us that in Earth’s oldest (sedimentary) rock, which dates at 3.80 billion years ago, we find an abundance for the carbon signature of living systems. Namely, that life prefers carbon 12. And so if you see a higher ratio of carbon 12 to carbon 13 that means that carbon has been processed by life. And it is that kind of evidence that tells us that life has been abundant on earth as far back as 3.80 billion years ago (when water was first present on earth).,,, And that same carbon 12 to carbon 13 analysis tells us that planet earth, over it entire 4.5662 billion year history has never had prebiotics. Prebiotics would have a higher ratio of carbon 13 to carbon 12. All the carbonaceous material, we see in the entire geological record of the earth, has the signature of being post-biotic not pre-biotic. Which means planet earth never had a primordial soup. And the origin of life on earth took place in a geological instant” (as soon as it was possible for life to exist on earth).
    – Dr. Hugh Ross – Origin Of Life Paradox (No prebiotic chemical signatures)- video (40:10 minute mark)

    In fact, the 4.1 bya zircon evidence itself disqualifies prebiotic chemistry

    Was Earth born with life already on it? – Sept. 24, 2016
    Excerpt: Living organisms?—?as far as we’ve been able to biologically observe?—?seem to prefer to uptake carbon-12 to carbon-13, due to metabolic enzymes reacting with carbon-12 more efficiently. If you find an ancient source of carbon and it’s enhanced with carbon-12 as opposed to carbon-13, that’s a good indicator that it’s the remnants of an organic life-form. By looking for graphite, a form of pure carbon, deposited in otherwise highly metamorphosed rocks,,, we’ve been able to push back well beyond that 1–2 billion year barrier, and had placed the emergence of Earth-life all the way back to 3.8 billion years ago, or just some 750 million years after Earth formed. But as of 2015, we’ve done even better.
    By finding graphite deposits in zircons that are 4.1 billion years old, graphite deposits that show this carbon-12 enhancement, we now have evidence that life on Earth goes back at least 90% of Earth’s history, and possibly even longer!

    Moreover, even if the right prebiotic chemicals would have been present, no one has the faintest clue how life can possibly come from non-life:

    “We have no idea how the molecules that compose living systems could have been devised such that they would work in concert to fulfill biology’s functions. We have no idea how the basic set of molecules, carbohydrates, nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins, were made and how they could have coupled into the proper sequences, and then transformed into the ordered assemblies until there was the construction of a complex biological system, and eventually to that first cell.
    Nobody has any idea how this was done when using our commonly understood mechanisms of chemical science. Those that say they understand are generally wholly uninformed regarding chemical synthesis. Those that say “Oh, this is well worked out,” they know nothing, nothing about chemical synthesis – Nothing!
    Further cluelessness – From a synthetic chemical perspective, neither I nor any of my colleagues can fathom a prebiotic molecular route to construction of a complex system. We cannot figure out the prebiotic routes to the basic building blocks of life: carbohydrates, nucleic acids, lipids, and proteins. Chemists are collectively bewildered. Hence I say that no chemist understands prebiotic synthesis of the requisite building blocks let alone their assembly into a complex system.
    That’s how clueless we are. I’ve asked all of my colleagues – National Academy members, Nobel Prize winners -I sit with them in offices; nobody understands this. So if your professors say it’s all worked out, your teachers say it’s all worked out, they don’t know what they’re talking about. It is not worked out. You cannot just refer this to somebody else; they don’t know what they’re talking about.”
    – James Tour – James Tour is the T. T. and W. F. Chao Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Materials Science and NanoEngineering, and Professor of Computer Science at Rice University in Houston, Texas:
    The Origin of Life: An Inside Story – March 2016 Lecture with James Tour

    As to this quote from the article,,

    ,,, On Earth, simple life appears to have formed quickly, but it likely took many millions of years for very simple life to evolve the ability to photosynthesize.

    This is another false evolutionary assumption. Although no one has the faintest clue how simple self-replication can spontaneously occur, photosynthesis, due to the complexity involved, compounds the origin of life problem to make it that much worse for Darwinists.

    Evolutionary biology: Out of thin air John F. Allen & William Martin:
    The measure of the problem is here: “Oxygenetic photosynthesis involves about 100 proteins that are highly ordered within the photosynthetic membranes of the cell.”

    Enzymes and protein complexes needed in photosynthesis – with graphs

    Thus, Darwinists, because of the astonishing complexity involved in photosynthesis, just assume that ‘simple’ self-replication must have come first.
    Yet despite their evolutionary assumption, the fact of the matter is that we have evidence that the first life on earth was already capable of photosynthesis

    Iron in Primeval Seas Rusted by Bacteria – Apr. 23, 2013
    Excerpt: The oldest known iron ores were deposited in the Precambrian period and are up to four billion years old (the Earth itself is estimated to be about 4.6 billion years old). ,,,
    This research not only provides the first clear evidence that microorganisms were directly involved in the deposition of Earth’s oldest iron formations; it also indicates that large populations of oxygen-producing cyanobacteria were at work in the shallow areas of the ancient oceans, while deeper water still reached by the light (the photic zone) tended to be populated by anoxyenic or micro-aerophilic iron-oxidizing bacteria which formed the iron deposits.,,,

    Moreover, anoxygenic (without oxygen) photosynthesis is even more of a complex chemical pathway than oxygenic photosynthesis is:

    “Remarkably, the biosynthetic routes needed to make the key molecular component of anoxygenic photosynthesis are more complex than the pathways that produce the corresponding component required for the oxygenic form.”;
    Early Life Remains Complex By Fazale R. Rana (FACTS for FAITH Issue 7, 2001)

    Origin of life: heterotrophic or autotrophic , the emergence of the Basic Metabolic Processes – graph
    – article

    Moreover, evidence for ‘sulfate reducing’ bacteria has been discovered alongside the evidence for photosynthetic bacteria:

    When Did Life First Appear on Earth? – Fazale Rana – December 2010
    Excerpt: The primary evidence for 3.8 billion-year-old life consists of carbonaceous deposits, such as graphite, found in rock formations in western Greenland. These deposits display an enrichment of the carbon-12 isotope. Other chemical signatures from these formations that have been interpreted as biological remnants include uranium/thorium fractionation and banded iron formations. Recently, a team from Australia argued that the dolomite in these formations also reflects biological activity, specifically that of sulfate-reducing bacteria.

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    In fact, as far as we can tell thus far from the scientific evidence, the first life on earth lived in complex colonies called ‘microbial mats’

    Hints of oldest fossil life found in Greenland rocks – Carolyn Gramling – Aug. 31, 2016
    Excerpt: How long has Earth harbored life? Chemical signatures found in hardy microscopic crystals called zircons point to a beginning about 4.1 billion years ago. But finding fossilized remains of microbes—undoubtedly the creature of the day—is a far more difficult task. Now, scientists say they have identified fossilized microbial mats, called stromatolites, in Greenland that date to about 3.7 billion years ago—nearly 300 million years older than the previous fossil record holder. The find may help guide scientists searching for life on other planets.
    “It’s pretty impressive that anything remotely like a stromatolite is being found [in these rocks],” says Abigail Allwood, a geologist,,,

    Geobiologist Noffke Reports Signs of Life that Are 3.48 Billion Years Old – 11/11/13
    Excerpt: the mats woven of tiny microbes we see today covering tidal flats were also present as life was beginning on Earth. The mats, which are colonies of cyanobacteria, can cause unusual textures and formations in the sand beneath them. Noffke has identified 17 main groups of such textures caused by present-day microbial mats, and has found corresponding structures in geological formations dating back through the ages.

    These following sites have illustrations that show some of the interdependent biogeochemical complexity involved in ‘Microbial Mats’ ,,,

    Microbial Mat Ecology – Image on page 92 (third page down)

    Biologically mediated cycles for hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur, and iron – image of interdependent ‘biogeochemical’ web

    Please note, that if even one type of bacteria group did not exist in this complex cycle of biogeochemical interdependence, that was illustrated on the preceding sites, then all of the different bacteria would soon die out. This essential biogeochemical interdependence, of the most primitive different types of bacteria that we have evidence of on ancient earth, makes the origin of life ‘problem’ for neo-Darwinists that much worse. For now not only do neo-Darwinists have to explain how the ‘miracle of life’ happened once with the origin of photosynthetic bacteria, but they must now also explain how all these different types bacteria, that photosynthetic bacteria are dependent on, in this irreducibly complex biogeochemical web, miraculously arose just in time to supply the necessary nutrients, in their biogeochemical link in the chain, for photosynthetic bacteria to continue to survive.

    As well, though not clearly illustrated in the illustration on the ‘Mat Ecology’ sites, please note that the long term tectonic cycle, of the turnover the Earth’s crustal rocks, must also be fine-tuned to a certain degree with the bacterial life and thus also plays an important ‘foundational’ role in the overall ecology of the earth over long periods of time that must be accounted for as well.

    Moreover, photosynthesis itself is now found to be achieved by quantum coherence. Quantum coherence is a ‘non-local’, beyond space and time, effect that is simply irreducible to any possible materialistic explanation that Darwinists may put forth:

    Quantum Mechanics at Work in Photosynthesis: Algae Familiar With These Processes for Nearly Two Billion Years – Feb. 2010
    Excerpt: “We were astonished to find clear evidence of long-lived quantum mechanical states involved in moving the energy. Our result suggests that the energy of absorbed light resides in two places at once — a quantum superposition state, or coherence — and such a state lies at the heart of quantum mechanical theory.”,,, “It suggests that algae knew about quantum mechanics nearly two billion years before humans,” says Scholes.

    Quantum Mechanics Explains Efficiency of Photosynthesis – Jan. 9, 2014
    Excerpt: Previous experiments suggest that energy is transferred in a wave-like manner, exploiting quantum phenomena, but crucially, a non-classical explanation could not be conclusively proved as the phenomena identified could equally be described using classical physics.,,,
    Now, a team at UCL have attempted to identify features in these biological systems which can only be predicted by quantum physics, and for which no classical analogues exist.
    ,,,said Alexandra Olaya-Castro (UCL Physics & Astronomy), supervisor and co-author of the research. “We found that the properties of some of the chromophore vibrations that assist energy transfer during photosynthesis can never be described with classical laws, and moreover, this non-classical behaviour enhances the efficiency of the energy transfer.”,,,
    Other biomolecular processes such as the transfer of electrons within macromolecules (like in reaction centres in photosynthetic systems), the structural change of a chromophore upon absorption of photons (like in vision processes) or the recognition of a molecule by another (as in olfaction processes), are influenced by specific vibrational motions. The results of this research therefore suggest that a closer examination of the vibrational dynamics involved in these processes could provide other biological prototypes exploiting truly non-classical phenomena,,

    Coherence and nonlocality
    Usually quantum nonlocality is discussed in terms of, (entanglement), correlated multiparticle systems such as those discussed by John Bell in his famous 1964 theorem and then later clarified by GHZ, David Mermin and others.
    But more striking and significant is the qualitative nonlocal phenomena associated with coherent states,,,,
    In fact, theoretically these two kinds of nonlocality have precisely the same basis: the unmeasured singlet state uncovered by EPR is a coherent ‘pure state’ despite its spacial extension, and when the parts are realized in a measurement (a la Bell) this coherence is harvested or cashed in.
    Whereas the “EPR” connections are ephemeral and fragile, some forms of nonlocal coherence are robust.

    Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – 29 October 2012
    Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”

    Quantum correlations do not imply instant causation – August 12, 2016
    Excerpt: A research team led by a Heriot-Watt scientist has shown that the universe is even weirder than had previously been thought.
    In 2015 the universe was officially proven to be weird. After many decades of research, a series of experiments showed that distant, entangled objects can seemingly interact with each other through what Albert Einstein famously dismissed as “Spooky action at a distance”.
    A new experiment by an international team led by Heriot-Watt’s Dr Alessandro Fedrizzi has now found that the universe is even weirder than that: entangled objects do not cause each other to behave the way they do.

    Thus, photosynthetic life, which is an absolutely vital link for all higher biological life on earth to receive food, uses a ‘non-local’, beyond space and time, quantum mechanical effect in order to accomplish its photosynthesis.

    Christians should be very comforted by that finding


    1 John 1:5
    This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

  3. 3
    bFast says:

    Ok, so I read UCLA’s site:

    They say: The graphite is older than the zircon containing it, the researchers said. They know the zircon is 4.1 billion years old

    They say: The carbon contained in the zircon has a characteristic signature — a specific ratio of carbon-12 to carbon-13 — that indicates the presence of photosynthetic life.

    They seem to be saying that photosynthetic life has been detected at 4.1b. But photosynthesis is EXTREMELY advanced.

    They say: it likely took many millions of years for very simple life to evolve the ability to photosynthesize.

    Ie, our theory says that a lot of “evolution” happened prior to 4.1b or our theory is wrong.

    They then naturally extrapolate: The research suggests life in the universe could be abundant

    Must be. Making life must be easy. The scientists attempting abiogeneis must be idiots.

  4. 4
    gpuccio says:


    Well, they say:

    “Life on Earth may have started almost instantaneously,” added Harrison, a member of the National Academy of Sciences. “With the right ingredients, life seems to form very quickly.”

    So, you are apparently right. The scientists attempting abiogenesis must be idiots.

    Or, very simply, they have no idea of what “the right ingredients” are! 🙂

  5. 5
    awstar says:

    “With the right ingredients, life seems to form very quickly.”

    Having very little training in science but having a deep faith in the Bible, I take great comfort in the comments that Jonathan Wells wrote regarding the right ingredients and forming of life.

    If we place a small amount of sterile salt solution in a test tube at just the right temperature and acidity, add a living cell, and then poke a hole in that cell with a sterile needle, the contents will leak out. We will have in our test tube all of the molecules needed for life, in just the right proportions (relative to each other) and already assembled into complex specified DNAs, RNAs, proteins, lipids, and carbohydrates. But we will not be able to make a living cell out of them. We cannot put Humpty Dumpty back together again.

    This means I don’t have to throw my Bible out in favor of a science textbook just yet.

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