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Default Erosion problem for billion year old Earth?

October 11th, 2012, 05:19
I was curious has anyone attempted to answer this issue from a scientific perspective? I googled it and can find a few creationist and intelligent design sites but nothing from evolution oriented sites. Thanks in advance.







Some quotes from creationist/intelligent design sites forgive me if i got the citations wrong

The continents are eroding at a rate that would level them in much less than 25 million years (a). However, evolutionists believe that fossils of animals and plants at high elevations have somehow avoided this erosion for more than 300 million years. Something is wrong.

a. Nevins, pp. 80–81.

George C. Kennedy, “The Origin of Continents, Mountain Ranges, and Ocean Basins,” American Scientist, Vol. 47, December 1959, pp. 491–504.




Roth, “Some Questions about Geochronology,” pp. 65–67.

“North America is now being eroded at a rate that could level it in a mere 10 million years …” Dott and Batten, p. 133.




"Some of these rates [of erosion] are obviously staggering; the Yellow River could peneplain [flatten out] an area with the average height that of Everest in 10 million years. The student has two courses open to him: to accept long extrapolations of short-term denudation [erosion] figures and doubt the reality of the erosion surfaces, or to accept the erosion surfaces and be skeptical about the validity of long extrapolations of present erosion rates."

Sparks, B. W., Geomorphology. 3rd ed. Longman Group, London and New York, 1986.
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October 11th, 2012, 05:53
Not all areas are as prone to erosion. And, in the case of fossils, I'm sure many have been discovered in previously water-submerged areas.

It's a pretty general thought problem. Each region has its own history.
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October 11th, 2012, 09:13
Originally Posted by Drithius View Post
Not all areas are as prone to erosion. And, in the case of fossils, I'm sure many have been discovered in previously water-submerged areas.

It's a pretty general thought problem. Each region has its own history.
Got it, different areas, different erosion rates. Any reason why that is?

EDIT: I guess diffferent wind and rain fall rates affect erosion?
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October 11th, 2012, 11:51
Well, for one, continents don't just erode, they also constantly form - as continental plates collide, or oceanic plates subduct under a continental plate new material is folded up, lifted, and added to the landmass. An example of these processes are the big mountain ranges thus as the Alps, the Himalaya. But also less spectacular landmasses, e.g. California is a veritable patchwork of landmasses assembled over geological history (sugggested reading "Assembling California" http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1…ing_California). Other processes, e.g. volcanism or granite intrusions etc. can also add mass. (See "Orogeny" in Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orogenic_belt).
Erosion depends on type of rock, climate (precipitation / heat / freezing/thawing, glaciation, vegetation), and terrain. Erosion in one place on a continent (e.g. the mountains) may well lead to accumulation in another place (e.g. all lakes are places of accumulation).
Really stable are only the "Cratons" the old cores of the continents. They are stable against recycling into the mantle apparently because of their special mineralogy (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal…l/467007b.html). But the main thing is that continents are not things once created millions or billions of year ago and then left to erosion, but according to current views in geology, are continuously and dynamically assembled and disassembled over geologic time.

Anyway here is a link presenting the scientific counter-arguments in a bit more detail:
http://orgs.usd.edu/esci/age/content…ontinents.html
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October 11th, 2012, 12:01
Thank you.
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October 11th, 2012, 12:20
Once again (regarding the citiation, not you Damian): Believe what you want, but don't try to "prove" it scientifically. That's just embarassing.

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October 11th, 2012, 12:27
Originally Posted by GhanBuriGhan View Post
Really stable are only the "Cratons" the old cores of the continents. They are stable against recycling into the mantle apparently because of their special mineralogy (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal…l/467007b.html). But the main thing is that continents are not things once created millions or billions of year ago and then left to erosion, but according to current views in geology, are continuously and dynamically assembled and disassembled over geologic time.
Yes.

- Cratons *can* , however, become unstable, too. we have currently 2 rare cases of thin "intra-plate tectonic volcanism" : The East Africa Rift and the middle German Rhine Rift - the volcanic activity in the Eifel area is frightening young, still - seen from a geological perspective. Early human tribes were buried under the Ashes o the Laacher See vulcano a few ten thousands of years ago. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laacher_See

- Material eroded in one place is transported - by rivers, for example - into other areas, where it becomes a deposit. That's the reason why the coast of the Maas/Rhine rivers in the Nederlande must be continuously dug out by machines. Otherwise there would be a new river delta soon, and the harbour/port there wouldn't be accessible anymore. This is the way new land is created.

a similar thing happened in ancient times, too : In Greece there are several ancient towns/ruins now lying in-land which had once been harbours. Ghent of Belgium is a similar example.

“ Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage – to move in the opposite direction.“ (E.F.Schumacher, Economist, Source)
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October 11th, 2012, 13:44
So i read that last link you gave me GahnBuriGhan. It seems to imply that erosion that strong exists and that tectonic plates push up land as time goes by to counter this effect. So how can the geologic column exist if that is the case? Wouldnt it mean that the current geologic column is relatively young as in less than 10 million years old or whatever?
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October 11th, 2012, 16:18
By geologic column I assume you mean the sediment record? Again it varies greatly by location. In the puddle in front of your house, you have a sediment record of a few hours, before it dries out and gets eroded again. A lake may have a record going back to the last ice age, a few 10000 years. A deep marine trough may have sediments going back many millions. When this trough is eventually uplifeted, folded, and eroded, that former sea bed may now, many millions of years later, be a mountain (or a Grand Canyon), and some parts of it may be exposed at the surface (or accessible through drilling) . In the sea in front of this new mountain a new record has formed.
So, there is no continuous geologic record anywhere in the world that goes undisturbed from present day all the way to the first solid rock. But lots of different sections covering different times that can be puzzled together. But of course it's true: all the dynamic reforming and weathering does lead to the fact that the older you want, the harder it usually gets - there are only a few places in the world where really ancient sedimentary rock e.g. the banded iron formation which are older than 3.5 billion years (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Banded_iron_formation) can still be found - but they do exist.
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October 12th, 2012, 02:04
I see. Thanks for clearing that issue for me. I like to read both sides of the argument.
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October 12th, 2012, 02:38
If you really want to understand science not crackpot creationists here's an excellent read about plate tectonics history for the US:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annals_of_the_Former_World

It won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction.

Cheers!
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October 17th, 2012, 02:30
Originally Posted by Damian View Post
I see. Thanks for clearing that issue for me. I like to read both sides of the argument.
A really good thing in this case. You can learn a LOT of science researching their arguments because they go all over the place! There's radioactive dating, thermodynamics, plate tectonics, heat of vaporization (why the 'vapor canopy' idea the JWs seem to like won't work), how stalactites form, probability theory, the heat death of the universe, how those bowls that make such good skiing are formed, "junk" DNA, the "P" and "J" writers of Genesis, the Doppler Effect, australopithecus, exactly how a new species can break off, flood mythologies of various cultures, on and on!

Of course, you also get the massive misquotes and cheap argument tricks, too. "The student has two courses open to him: to accept long extrapolations of short-term denudation [erosion] figures and doubt the reality of the erosion surfaces, or to accept the erosion surfaces and be skeptical about the validity of long extrapolations of present erosion rates." Scarecrow tactic: make up an argument, claim it's your opponent's, then blow it away. Good to use on a captive audience that can't look up what the arguments actually are (or don't really want to know). Stupid to use on the internet.
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October 23rd, 2012, 07:06
Originally Posted by Zloth View Post
A really good thing in this case. You can learn a LOT of science researching their arguments because they go all over the place! There's radioactive dating, thermodynamics, plate tectonics, heat of vaporization (why the 'vapor canopy' idea the JWs seem to like won't work), how stalactites form, probability theory, the heat death of the universe, how those bowls that make such good skiing are formed, "junk" DNA, the "P" and "J" writers of Genesis, the Doppler Effect, australopithecus, exactly how a new species can break off, flood mythologies of various cultures, on and on!

Of course, you also get the massive misquotes and cheap argument tricks, too. "The student has two courses open to him: to accept long extrapolations of short-term denudation [erosion] figures and doubt the reality of the erosion surfaces, or to accept the erosion surfaces and be skeptical about the validity of long extrapolations of present erosion rates." Scarecrow tactic: make up an argument, claim it's your opponent's, then blow it away. Good to use on a captive audience that can't look up what the arguments actually are (or don't really want to know). Stupid to use on the internet.
Yeah i dont go to the creationist sites that go between different disciplines. They are too much work. What is the issue with that quote? Is it wrong?
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