Interpretation of the Data


The "Snowball Earth" hypothesis runs into trouble in several areas.  However, first let's remember what three pieces of evidence gave rise to it:

1.  Dropstones in finely laminated deposits.  We know glaciers can and do cause this to happen.

2.  Paleomagnetic data indicating that a number of rocks in South Australia originated at or near the equator. What else besides glaciers could have dragged these rocks so far?

3.  Diamictites (called tillites when caused by glaciers) -- rocks of different sizes and types embedded in any one of a number of hardened matrixes. 

So what are some of the problems with the Snowball Earth hypothesis?

1.  The rocks in the diamictites show very sharp angles and rough sides and more roundedness on others, indicating they have been rolled by water.  Glaciers are very slow moving, and tend to polish off  the rocks they move. 

2.  The presence of large stromatololites.  Current stromatolite activity can be seen at Hamelin Pool in Western Australia.



These stromatolites form in warm water.  Currently they can be seen at up to 60 centimeters in height.  Yet, the fossilized stromatolites are over a meter in diameter!  This indicates a long period of growth.  "Their growth rate is estimated at about 0.04 to 1mm per year."   The presence of these large stromatolite fossils in the strata assigned to the Snowball Earth ice age indicates that there may not have been a Snowball Earth at all.  The stromatolites of today require warm water for their formation.  There is no reason to think this requirement was different in the past.

3.  The carbonate cap (limestone).  The formation of a carbonate cap requires warm greenhouse conditions.  The Brighton limestone is right in the middle of the "Snowball Earth" strata.  The only way the Snowball Earth advocates can explain this is via a series of sudden changes in the earth's atmosphere several times during this period of presumed glacial activity. 

4.  The obvious indication of liquid water rather than ice in some of the layering.

So is there another possible cause for what we are seeing in the Marinoan and Sturtian sequences?  We know it must be worldwide, for the presence of these sequences is worldwide.  Boulders out of place and paleomagnetic anomalies indicate something of great force was moving things around.  Stromatolites and carbonate caps indicate warmth.  All of this must be accounted for by any explanation deserving to be taken seriously.

There is a legend -- a story -- which keeps cropping up in ancient cultures from all around the world.  It has to do with a Flood that killed almost every living thing on land.

Except for one family, and some animals they had with them on some kind of a wooden boat.  These Flood legends are extremely common, as many have referenced. The most straightforward recounting of this event, as many are aware, takes place in the first book of the Bible, Genesis.  If we look at Genesis, as well as some other of the Flood stories from around the world, some interesting details can be noted.

First, waters burst forth from the earth's crust in places.  They did not seep or well up.  They burst forth:

"...on that day all the springs of the great deep burst forth, and the floodgates of the heavens were opened."  Genesis 7:11

The waters were scalding hot:

"To add to the destruction, we are told in the Talmud (Sanhedrin 108b) that the rain was scalding hot - certainly not a typical rainstorm, but a cosmic catastrophe."

Others tell of the waters coming from an oven:

"The Persian Magi possessed a tradition in which the waters issued from the oven of an old woman. Mohammed borrowed this story, and in the Koran he refers to the Deluge as coming from an oven."

There was great force involved and not simply rain falling:

"The Flood roared like a bull,
Like a wild ass screaming the winds
The darkness was total, there was no sun..."

If we go back to the Bible, and consider that ALL the fountains of the great deep burst forth, we have some evidences we can work with:

  • the waters were scaldingly hot
  • they were extraordinarily forceful
  • they contained a high mineral content

As can be seen in "A Brief Earth History" everything required and referred to fits exactly the great flood of Noah. 

If the Sturtian diamictites are indeed from the explosive outgassing of water from the earth’s interior in the manner outlined in “A Brief Earth History” elsewhere on this website, an interesting situation arises. The lightspeed correction to the date on the atomic clock for the Sturtian strata indicates that this event coincides with the timing of Noah’s Flood. The stromatolites mounds would therefore mark the end of this event which gave rise to about 3 km of strata near Adelaide. The more local Marinoan tillite lenses that give evidence of post-Flood activity may be considered to be conglomerates arising from downslope debris flows that came from earthquake activity associated with the rising landmasses on the edge of the supercontinent. In this environment, the Marinoan rhythmites may well be associated with either the continued rising of landmasses and deepening of the ocean basin, or a Lunar tidal origin as Williams has suggested, or both. Finally, a scenario may be envisaged where the dropstones may result from turbidity flows of fine material that has picked up and then deposited larger stones. An alternative may be the result of continuing earthquakes causing tsunami activity that ripped up vegetation mats. The dropstones would have fallen from the bottom of this rafted material. In this way, the whole snowball earth picture takes on a different complexion and some outstanding difficulties may be overcome.  

We therefore propose that the 'eras' or strata often associated with the "Snowball Earth" hypothesis are actually strong evidence for the reality of Noah's Flood happening exactly the way the Bible has indicated. This proposal differs from the standard creation model in that it looks like the Flood boundary is at the Precambrian/Cambrian boundary, instead of much further up the geologic column. As a result, part of the proposal here is that the vast majority of fossils are not products of Noah's flood, but of later catastrophes which were often localized, although related to the two following catastrophes of Babel and the time of Peleg, as well as to the continuing geological shifting which must have occurred for some time after the Flood itself. Because the waters of the Flood were both scalding and so forceful in the areas where they erupted (probably at the incipient plate boundaries), little or no chance for fossilization would have occurred. This is dealt with much more fully in both "Data and Creation" and The Bible and Geology. In the world of warm salty waters and shallow seas around the edges of the now enlarged oceans, however, there would have been ideal environments for stomatolite formation.

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