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Rob Sheldon on the renewal of 3.5 billion-year-old life claims


They’ve gone back ad forth with the Western Australian stromatolites (= life/not life) but recent evidence suggests life. Our physics color commentator Rob Sheldon, author of Genesis: The Long Ascent (Vols 1 & 2), offers some background:

Kranendonk has been doing stromatolite work since at least 2003, so he’s not a newcomer to the field. Generally speaking, everyone acknowledges that stromatolites are fossilized blue-green algae communities that have grown pillars over a couple of centuries. Shark Bay Australia is a famous site of stromatolites that are still growing.

Usually the debate circles around whether an old rock is an authentic stromatolite or not. Some less reputable astrobiologists have claimed that striated cherts from Australia were 3.85 billion year old stromatolites, but I don’t think that claim has held up.

Kranendonk is really happy to have isolated some organic compounds from a 3.5billion year stromatolite. His academic page at New South Wales university says that the paper is “in press”. I could not locate it from Google Scholar or arXiv.org. My best guess is that he has found something organically simple such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), if only because 3.5 billion years is a long time for organics to survive, and PAHs are the sort of keratonized (turned into keragen) that is stable. But then he says he found it under the electron microscope, which measures only atomic abundances. So I’m guessing these PAHs are found as a “carbon sheath” or layer surrounding fossilized blue-green algae, which just happens to be the same discovery as Richard Hoover on meteorites.

Well, keep digging!

See also: Stromatolites from 3.5 bya really ARE microbial life, say researchers.This doesn’t leave a lot of time for Darwinian evolution (natural selection acting on random mutation). Not nearly enough, in fact.

A bit of history (life to non-life, then back to life):

Researchers Suggest: Life Began On Land Not Sea. And Nearly 600 Mya Earlier Than Thought (2017)

World’s “Oldest Microfossils” Are Not Life Forms After All (2015)

Microbial Mats Show Fossil Structures From 3.5 Billion Years Ago (2014)

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as to:
The mats, which are colonies of cyanobacteria, can cause unusual textures and formations in the sand beneath them (microbially induced sedimentary structures, or MISS). 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.
In regards to the fact that MISS formations are the same throughout the geologic history of the earth, it is also interesting to point out, directly contrary to Darwinian thought, that bacteria also demonstrate an extreme conservation of morphology throughout the geologic history of earth:
AMBER: THE LOOKING GLASS INTO THE PAST: Excerpt: These (fossilized bacteria) cells are actually very similar to present day cyanobacteria. This is not only true for an isolated case but many living genera of cyanobacteria can be linked to fossil cyanobacteria. The detail noted in the fossils of this group gives indication of extreme conservation of morphology, more extreme than in other organisms. http://bcb705.blogspot.com/2007/03/amber-looking-glass-into-past_23.html Organisms Refusing to Evolve Over Millions of Years - January 15, 2016 Excerpt: The team conducted multiple tests on the mats and the microbes found hidden under them, including bulk carbon and SEM analysis and Raman micro-spectroscopy and report that the microbes were shaped like rods, growing in train like filaments, similar to many bacteria alive today. They note also that the microbes were quite uniform in shape and that they were able to control their diameter and length as modern microbes do. The fossils are also approximately 500 million years older than any other previous fossil found in a habitat, and thus represent some of the earliest forms of life ever found (the very earliest date back to approximately 3.43 billion years ago.) http://crev.info/2016/01/refusing-to-evolve/ Static evolution: is pond scum the same now as billions of years ago? Excerpt: But what intrigues (paleo-biologist) J. William Schopf most is lack of change. Schopf was struck 30 years ago by the apparent similarities between some 1-billion-year-old fossils of blue-green bacteria and their modern microbial counterparts. "They surprisingly looked exactly like modern species," Schopf recalls. Now, after comparing data from throughout the world, Schopf and others have concluded that modern pond scum differs little from the ancient blue-greens. "This similarity in morphology is widespread among fossils of [varying] times," says Schopf. As evidence, he cites the 3,000 such fossils found; http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Static+evolution%3A+is+pond+scum+the+same+now+as+billions+of+years+ago%3F-a014909330 Scientists discover organism that hasn't evolved in more than 2 billion years - February 3, 2015 Excerpt: Using cutting-edge technology, they found that the bacteria look the same as bacteria of the same region from 2.3 billion years ago -- and that both sets of ancient bacteria are indistinguishable from modern sulfur bacteria found in mud off of the coast of Chile. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/02/150203104131.htm
Thus not only do Darwinists not have any real clue how life could have possibly originated, they also have no evidence for the, basically, unlimited plasticity for life that they presuppose in their Darwinian worldview. Nor do Darwinists have any evidence from present day empirical science that it is even possible to transform one bacteria into another 'species' of bacteria:
Scant search for the Maker - 2001 Excerpt: But where is the experimental evidence? None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of 20 to 30 minutes, and populations achieved after 18 hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another, in spite of the fact that populations have been exposed to potent chemical and physical mutagens and that, uniquely, bacteria possess extrachromosomal, transmissible plasmids. Since there is no evidence for species changes between the simplest forms of unicellular life, it is not surprising that there is no evidence for evolution from prokaryotic to eukaryotic cells, let alone throughout the whole array of higher multicellular organisms. - Alan H. Linton - emeritus professor of bacteriology, University of Bristol. http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/story.asp?storycode=159282 Darwin vs. Microbes - video https://youtu.be/ntxc4X9Zt-I
And again, if Darwinian evolution were a real science instead of basically being a religion for the atheists, these results, if not an outright falsification of their theory, should at least make Darwinists severely rethink foundational presuppositions of their theory which hold that organism have, basically, unlimited plasticity in their morphology. Of semi related note: This 'problem' of conservation of morphology is not limited to bacteria but is also found in the overall fossil record as well. As the following researcher stated, "A key question now is what prevents groups from generating fundamentally new forms later on in their evolution.,,,"
Scientific study turns understanding about evolution on its head - July 30, 2013 Excerpt: evolutionary biologists,,, looked at nearly one hundred fossil groups to test the notion that it takes groups of animals many millions of years to reach their maximum diversity of form. Contrary to popular belief, not all animal groups continued to evolve fundamentally new morphologies through time. The majority actually achieved their greatest diversity of form (disparity) relatively early in their histories. ,,,Dr Matthew Wills said: "This pattern, known as 'early high disparity', turns the traditional V-shaped cone model of evolution on its head. What is equally surprising in our findings is that groups of animals are likely to show early-high disparity regardless of when they originated over the last half a billion years. This isn't a phenomenon particularly associated with the first radiation of animals (in the Cambrian Explosion), or periods in the immediate wake of mass extinctions.",,, Author Martin Hughes, continued: "Our work implies that there must be constraints on the range of forms within animal groups, and that these limits are often hit relatively early on. Co-author Dr Sylvain Gerber, added: "A key question now is what prevents groups from generating fundamentally new forms later on in their evolution.,,," http://phys.org/news/2013-07-scientific-evolution.html
Of related note:
Odd Geometry of Bacteria May Provide New Way to Study Earth's Oldest Fossils - May 2010 Excerpt: Known as stromatolites, the layered rock formations are considered to be the oldest fossils on Earth.,,,That the spacing pattern corresponds to the mats' metabolic period -- and is also seen in ancient rocks -- shows that the same basic physical processes of diffusion and competition seen today were happening billions of years ago,,, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100517152520.htm 3.5 billion-year-old ecosystem found - November 12, 2013 Excerpt: "Mound-like deposits created by ancient bacteria, called stromatolites, and microfossils of bacteria have previously been discovered in this region. However, a phenomenon called microbially induced sedimentary structures, or MISS, had not previously been seen in rocks of this great age." MISS were created by microbial mats as the microbial communities responded to changes in physical sediment dynamics, Professor Wacey said. "A common example would be the binding together of sediment grains by microbes to prevent their erosion by water currents," he said. "The significance of MISS is that they not only demonstrate the presence of life, but also the presence of whole microbial ecosystems that could co-ordinate with one another to respond to changes in their environment.",,, The team described the various MISS from the ancient coastal flats preserved in the Dresser Formation and found close similarities in both form and preservation style to MISS in younger rocks. http://www.sciencealert.com.au/news/20131211-25003.html 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. http://www.odu.edu/about/odu-publications/insideodu/2013/11/11/topstory1 Scientists find signs of life in Australia dating back 3.48 billion years - Thu November 14, 2013 Excerpt: “We conclude that the MISS in the Dresser Formation record a complex microbial ecosystem, hitherto unknown, and represent one of the most ancient signs of life on Earth.”... “this MISS displays the same associations that are known from modern as well as fossil” finds. The MISS also shows microbes that act like “modern cyanobacteria,” http://www.cnn.com/2013/11/13/world/asia/australia-ancient-life/
The following study shows clear evidence that microorganisms were directly involved in the deposition of Earth's oldest iron formations
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.,,, http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130423110750.htm
The following video, at the 3:00 minute mark, is also good for showing the history of banded iron formations in the geologic record and shows that banded iron formations go back as far as 3.8 billion years ago,
Dianne Newman - Part 1 - An overview of microbial diversity - video and transcript Excerpt from 3:00 minute mark: "Now this particular rock that you are looking at is about 3 billion years old and is from South Africa. But these rocks can be found all over the world, and they occur throughout Earth's history, going back as far as 3.4 billion years. However, when we go even further back in time, for example, back to 3.8 billion years, you can see ore deposits that one might not intuit immediately had anything to do with microorganisms, and yet they do. They indeed record a history of microbial activities that was quite profound, so profound that it quite literally transformed the planet." http://www.allreadable.com/b34f25Af

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