Life took hold on land at least as early as 3.2 billion years ago, suggests a study. The team studied ancient rock formations from South Africa’s Barberton greenstone belt. These rocks are some of the oldest known on Earth, with their formation dating back to 3.5 billion years.
These rocks are some of the oldest known on Earth, with their formation dating back to 3.5 billion years. In a layer that has been dated at 3.22 billion years old, tiny grains of the iron sulfide mineral pyrite were discovered that show telltale signs of microbial activity. Paper. (paywall) – Sami Nabhan, Michael Wiedenbeck, Ralf Milke, Christoph Heubeck. Biogenic overgrowth on detrital pyrite in ca. 3.2 Ga Archean paleosols. Geology, 2016; 44 (9): 763 DOI: 10.1130/G38090.1More.
Even less time for purely Darwinian evolution… Not that anyone points that out, of course.
See also: First transitional land fossils never walked on their legs?
What we know and don’t know about the origin of life
Stasis: Life goes on but evolution does not happen
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