Re: Origins: rapid flooding

Glenn Morton (
Mon, 09 Sep 1996 20:35:02

David Campbell wrote:

>I don't seem too have been quite clear-floating the glaciers would not have
>produced an 18O record. Melting certainly would.

If you float the glaciers, remember what I cited from that Science article
(problems were as follows (see various authors, Glacial surges and
Flood Legends, Science 193, p. 1268-1271):

>3. ONe guy calculated that if a mass of ice 2800 km long, by 100 km wide by 1
>km thick had melted in one year, it would raise the sea level by .7 meters.
>Stretched out over a year that is 5 cm per month. If you didn't have very
>sensitive gages, do you think you would notice that?

So, if you float a block of ice of this volume, the ocean will adjust very
rapidly. But the glaciers will not stay in the arctic or antarctic if you
float them. They will tend to float to more temperate climes. This will
induce their melting and if they melt the signature of this event would appear
in the O-18 record. Even if the melting occurred 2 or 3 years later than the
actual event, the record would be there. Besides, on a scale of 10,000 years,
what is a couple of years anyway? There is no signature.

Now, lets look at the rise in sealevel. Assume that you are standing on the
shore when the water begins to rise. It will not come in as a .7 m tall wall
of water unless you are on the shore immediately adjacent to the glacier.
This is because as the wave spreads out, the gradient of the wave lessens due
to the different phase velocities of various wave frequencies. It will
gradually rise probably over a period of an hour or two. But even if it comes
in instantaneously, a .7 m wall of water would have difficulty drowning me.
If I sit on the ground, it is 31 inches from my rear end to my mouth. This is
.78 m. As long as I am able to get my feet under me every 15 seconds or so, I
can lift my head well above the water as it drives me inland and catch a

Lots of children would be killed by this event, but probably not a lot of
adults (except those who struck their head on something. And this event could
hardly be described as needing an ark or covering the high mountains.

Your suggestion would leave a mark in the O-18 record, which is lacking.


Foundation,Fall and Flood