Date: Fri Sep 12 2003 - 22:39:51 EDT
On Tue, 09 Sep 2003 12:33:37 -0400 Dick Fischer
Here are ten observations that should stump any card-carrying YEC. Want
10. The sheer amount of coal and oil that has been found on the earth's
surface could not have materialized from the amount of organic material
that could have accumulated in the short time YECs allow between the
creation and the flood. YEC cannot explain the abundance of fossil fuel
found all over the earth.
I don't know much about oil, but I am studying coal. I am collecting
observations of geologists from the literature which cannot be explained
within the swamp model for coal, but do fit the transported (flood)
Incidentally, your "observation" re coal and oil is an interpretation,
not an observation. Observations are things we can see, and you cannot
see what might have accumulated "between the creation and the flood."
But let me give you a few real observations, and you respond with the
swamp model explanation.
"Waterworn pebbles of banded coal often occur in the base of the
overlying sandstone and, according to a few specimens which were examined
for microfossil content, they appear to have been derived from the
Pittsburgh coal itself. It is very difficult to explain how such coal
pebbles could have been loosened from a coal seam, then so recently
deposited, and become waterworn and then have been redeposited in the
first sandstone to be laid down such a short time later. By the time of
reworking, the peat deposit must have been advanced in rank at least to
the stage of lignite for the pebbles are normal banded, have well
developed cleat and usually retained their basic shape even though they
very often lie at some angle to the bedding plane of the underlying coal
From: Cross, A.T., 1952. The geology of the Pittsburgh coal:
stratigraphy, petrology, origin and composition, and geologic
interpretation of mining problems. Second Conference of the Origin and
Constitution of Coal, 75.
If the Pittsburgh coal was an active swamp when buried by the sand, how
do you explain the coal pebbles in the sandstone?
" ‘Exotics,’ boulders or cobbles of composition other than the
surrounding bedrock, are a common occurrence in coal seams from Oklahoma
to Pennsylvania. Several such occurrences are known from coal seams in
England. The exotics are frequently composed of granitic or other igneous
material, although rock types such as quartz and quartzite are also
commonly reported. The exotics are embedded in coal seams whose
surrounding bedrock is sedimentary…. It is very likely that the boulders
were attached to roots of floating trees, therefore indicating they were
transported in rafts of marine plants. This has great implications for
the origin of these Pennsylvanian coals."
From: Branson, C.C., Meraitt, C.A., 1963. An igneous cobble in an
Oklahoma coal bed. Oklahoma Geology Notes, v 23, no 10, 235-241. In
Austin, S.A., 1994. Catastrophe Reference Database, version 1.2,
Institute for Creation Research, 294.
"Throughout large parts of the mapped area the coal varies only an inch
or so in average thickness over areas three or four counties in extent.
The vast area covered by this coal, 600 to 700 mile in distance as
mapped, and perhaps 1200 miles in distance...is possible only on a
surface whose flatness is probably not matched on the earth today. It is
probably...that coincidence of topographic smoothness and a favorable
climate were necessary to provide for coal deposition at so nearly the
same time over such vast areas."
From: Wanless, H.R., Baroffio, J.R., Trescott, P.C., 1969. Conditions of
deposition of Pennsylvanian Coal Bed. In: Environments of Coal
deposition, GSA Special Paper 114, 134.
Swamps I have seen are not flat, and compaction (estimated to be 10x from
peat to coal) will not even irregular peat deposits to within an inch
over hundreds of square miles. What's your modern analog?
"...the 'blue band'...parting of blue gray clay...generally ranges from 1
to 3 inches in thickness and lies a little below the middle of the coal.
In most parts of Illinois there is an additional parting averaging 1/2
inch thick 6 to 10 inches below the blue band, and at many places a
minute dark shale of clay parting averaging 1/8 inch is 1-1/2 to 2 feet
below the top of the coal. These partings are traceable through a belt
ranging from 550 miles in linear distance northwest-southeast from north
central Iowa to western Kentucky and 430 miles northeast-southwest from
central western Indiana to eastern Kansas. A principal problem to
explain in any case is how the forest vegetation of a swamp could be so
completely levelled as to permit accumulation of a continuous layer of
clay averaging an inch or so in thickness."
From: Wanless, H.R., 1952. Studies of field relationships of coal beds.
In: Second Conference on the Origin and Constitution of Coal, 164-167,
There are actually two problems here: 1) to level the swamp before
deposition of each parting, and 2) to establish a new swamp on top of
each parting without disturbing the partings with roots from the swamp
trees above. What is your explanation?
Bill Payne, P.G.
MACTEC Engineering and Consulting, Inc.
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