Re: It may be hard for life to get started

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Thu Jan 11 2001 - 20:47:41 MST

John Clark wrote:
>In today's issue of Nature a team of scientists from UCLA and the
>Curtin University of Technology in Perth Australia present strong
>evidence that liquid water existed on Earth at least 4.3 billion years ago,
>400 million years earlier than previously thought. The oldest known fossil
>is 3.85 billion years old and if we only started to get liquid water
>3.9 billion
>ago as had been believed then the origin of life, at least the simplest
>forms of it, must have formed very quickly and thus be easy to do.
>But if life needed those extra 400 million years to get started then it might
>not be effortless for nature to produce even the most rudimentary life forms.
>This may mean that simple life as well as the complex stuff like us is rare
>in the universe.

Actually, I predict that this is not true.

The new evidence that liquid water existed earlier than previously
thought only came about because we hadn't found rocks that old
before. Once we found the older rocks and looked at them, we found
the evidence of early water.

I predict that the same is true of micro-fossils. We haven't found
them that old because we haven't found rocks that old before. Once
we find enough older rocks and look at them, I expect we will start
finding older evidence of life, and will push back the origin of life
about 400 million years also.

Harvey Newstrom <>

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