Over at http://www.iidb.org there is a creationist named Ed whom I have repeatedly locked horns with (metaphorically, of course). He believes in the literal historicity of Noah's Flood, but he believes in a strange variant of Flood Geology.
At one time, he'd advocate two versions of it, which I call big-sediment and little-sediment Flood Geology. Big-sediment Flood Geology is the usual version, which holds that much of the Phanerozoic rock, if not all of it, is due to Noah's Flood. By contrast, little-sediment Flood Geology states that Noah's Flood was responsible for a tiny layer in the geological column, one that can easily escape the notice of geologists.
Ed went through a period of advocating both as a counter to mainstream geology, switching between them as was expedient -- and never caring that they cannot both be right. He would respond to critical questions by claiming that he is not a geologist, while continuing to advocate both views. More recently, however, he has settled little-sediment Flood Geology.
He maintains that this conveniently-hidden flood happened about 2 million years ago, and he makes some other related claims, like the Bible omitting lots of people in its lists of begots and that Homo erectus is the same species as Homo sapiens. I have offered to have a formal debate with him on IIDB about that subject, but he has refused.
He'd make other claims, like mainstream geologists rejecting the literal historicity of Noah's Flood because they have decided to rebel against God. However, he has offered no direct evidence for his claim, but has instead claimed that he knows human nature, and that it is human nature to rebel against God.
[This message has been edited by lpetrich, 11-30-2003]
He's finally settled on little-sediment because like others, the idea that one flood could deposit so much sediment is hard to back up.
One problem I see is that unless the earth was lacking topography at the time, there is no way to deposit a thin layer. (Did he happen to mention how thin? Probably not.) Meaning that higher elevations would have very much less than the basins. I would expect several hundred feet of sediment in the basins, at the very least.
Also, this layer should crop out someplace. Simple stratigraphy would be able to trace the outcrop locally, as well as regionally, and even globally.
Two million years ago, you say, so he's an OEC? Two million years ago is a drop in the bucket. Those deposits would probably look as fresh today as the day they were deposited.
[This message has been edited by roxrkool, 12-05-2003]
A flood of global proportions would not leave a thin little later of sediment. An ashfall leaves a thin layer. A global flood would leave a thick graded layer of boulders, vegetation, bones, etc.,overlain by various uniform layers that get finer and finer grained toward the top. You'd be able to trace it to every continent in the world.
Indeed, a flood of global proportions initiated by and following a forty-day, hyper-intense, torrential rainfall event capable of covering the entire surface of the earth, would lay down an unbelievably deep layer of sediment.
Anyone who has observed rampaging flood waters following a 100-year rainfall event in the Ohio River or Mississippi River basins could attest to the amount of sediment carried by the flood waters. Even more to the point are the effects of the upland erosion that would result from intense, long-term, saturating rainfall scouring the supersaturated earth over a forty-day period in the volumes required to subsequently cover the entire earth.
Now, from an evolutionist's point of view, all the mineral and fossilized organic materials from millions of years of pre-Deluge sedimentation would be dislodged from their orderly layers, jumbled up together in an earth-scarifying, sediment-laden rush of waters resembling something along the order of a molten lava flow rather than just a thick, muddy little 100-year flood.
Then, as Roxrkool has said, the heavier sediment would settle out, immediately upon pooling, into a reconsolidated, very thick layer of mumbo-jumbo, mishmash of materials that had no previous evolutionary nexus within a previous, single sedimentary layer. Where is this worldwide layer of Deluge concrete mixer washout? It should be very easy to find as it is overlaid by only 5,500 years of subsequent sediment laid down by puny (by comparison) little rainfall events.
[This message has been edited by Abshalom, 12-13-2003]
My image of the results of the "Great Flood" (presuming God pulled 2 miracles to produce all that water from "thin air", and then got rid of all that water, again to "thin air"):
Assuming that there was an extremely heavy world wide rain fall for 40 days and nights, I would expect that the results would be great areas of the continents largely stripped down to bedrock. This massive sediment load would be dumped as massive river deltas, which would contain large boulders from the ultra-high stream and river flow.
As such, the evidence would not be a world wide sediment layer, but rather vast areas of land devoid of sediment.
This would seem to be an "old earth" model. The geological evidence is totally at odds with a "young earth", unless God created it with apparent age.
Added by edit: I read the previous message more carefully, after posting the above.
quote: Even more to the point are the effects of the upland erosion that would result from intense, long-term, saturating rainfall scouring the supersaturated earth over a forty-day period...
That "upland erosion" was what I was think of, when I talked of the ground being stripped to the bedrock.
[This message has been edited by minnemooseus, 12-15-2003]
Your scenerio is dead on. I was not specific enough in my scenerio of subsequent deposits. They would indeed be concentrated in 'river deltas' and comprised of mishmash of large stone and small particle deposit layer with all manner of fossilized material previously segregated into orderly layers being reconsolidted in a single deep layer of materials that did not live, die, and become deposited within anything resembling a 'nexus.'
Maybe later in the thread I will quote a reliable source I have to look up again regarding the average quantity of sediment deposited annually by the Mississippi River in the Gulf of Mexico, but if memory serves me right, it's along the lines of 25 billion tons a year without benefit of anything more than average annual precipitation and the occasional "100-year" event in one or more of the Mississippi's upland basins.
However, consider the innundation of the entire earth's surface for an entire year by supersilt-laden waters. The finer clay particles from this stilled waters would have left a substantial and visible layer of fines at least on the order of an emmense volcanic eruption such as "Toga" of 75,000 years ago, which layer of ash is recorded by oceanic borings to be about 18 to 24 inches thick in the Indian Ocean alone. The estimated volume of that eruption is 35 thousand cubic kilometers from a calderon approximately 30 square miles in area if my memory serves me right. The "Flood" would have stripped vastly more cubic miles of material off the Earth's surface by erosion, and suspended a fine silt load that would have deposited a much thicker layer of silt fines worldwide.
I wasn't as detailed either, in my description. I did not mean that the massive conglomeratic layer would be global, just the finer grained seds that would settle out of the flood waters after the entire planet was inundated.
The higher altitudes would likely be stripped to bedrock while all the basins (aerial and sub-aerial, rivers, etc., would be filled with the massive conglomeratic deposits.
quote:A global flood would leave a thick graded layer
Basically a giant Bouma sequence resting on an erosional unconformity.
quote:You'd be able to trace it to every continent in the world.
Must of the Flood layer would be found deposited in the current ocean basins, where, of course, ODP logs have failed to find it.
I feel that the associated deltas have been mischaracterized. I propose the the deltas would be composed mostly of cobbles and boulders, whereas sediments would bypass the deltas and be deposited offshore. While it is entirely possible that a great flood would leave deposits on continents, I feel that a catastrophic regression might leave an erosional unconformity with local, Flood deposits reworked (a la Channeled Scablands). This sounds a lot like Moose's model, which I mostly concur with. 'Dunes' of conglomerate eroded by post-Flood streams. submarine fans, while fines would tend to be offshore.
[This message has been edited by gene90, 12-15-2003]
I think of places like the Great Basin where a massive amount of sediment would be deposited. First a megaconglomerate followed by finer grained sequences. But I suppose if I were a creationist, I'd just say that the Great Basin was formed after the flood and therefore would not contain flood deposits. However, there are many other basins throughout geologic history. The Wit comes to mind.
Continents would most certainly have at least finer grained flood deposits that would be traceable across the globe. As has already been mentioned, the flood waters would be carrying large amounts of suspended sediment. The water was supposed to have covered the highest peak by about 200 feet, if I remember correctly. In the lowest lying elevations, fine-grained sediment would accumulate a least several feet thick. Unfortunately, with creationists, there's always a way out.
[This message has been edited by roxrkool, 12-15-2003]
I think we are all pretty much in agreement, with each of us adding detail that others have neglected. Perhaps a pretty good model, especially considering that we have no idea where the water came from, or where it went.
For the sake of speculation, I put forward this "what if" model of ocean basin change. Suppose that the floor of all the worlds oceans were to be at the elevation of the current sea level (just grant this idea, don't argue why it can't be). Also assume that the continental topography remained the same.
If such were the case, what would sea level be, relative to that "sea level" elevation ocean floor? A fair approximation of this would be, the depth of the ocean if the volume of the ocean would be spread out over a sphere of the diameter of the (real) sea level.
Someone needs to find or calculate the surface area of the earth, find the total volume of the oceans, and then spread that volume over that area, and calculate the resultant water depth. I'm trying to pass the job off onto someone else .
As long as "passing the buck" is allowed, I would like to pass the buck on three calculations:
1) Storm intensity given in inches per hour of a 40-day long event resulting in run-off required to cover Mt. Everest by 200 feet.
2) R.U.S.L.E. calculation of the gross total worldwide erosion caused by the event summed in calculation #1 above.
3) Gross cubic tons of sediment loading resuspended by the effects of the post-Deluge, 40-day, rapid draw-down across the supersaturated sediment layer from the initial year-long laydown of sediment originally precipitated from the Flood pool.
For the sake of this discussion, I was not trying to produce all the water via rainfall. The rainfall would just be a "side-issue" of the flood.
Also, I've been pondering a substantial world wide flood, but not one substantial enough to cover the highest mountains.
I was thinking of an example flood, where sea level would rise, say, 2000 meters. That would still cover a lot of the continents.
If the entire flood event were to be confined to 1 year, and assuming uniform rates, then that 2000 meter sea level rise would happen in 1/2 year (182.5 days). 2000 meters / 182.5 days = sea level rising at 11 meters per day. The rise over 40 days would be 440 meters.
I heard quite a while back (notes long misplaced), that the recorded record 24 hour rainfall was something like 80 inches (call it 2 meters). This was at the Ascension(sp?) Islands, in the Indian Ocean, during a typhoon.
I added the volume of the oceans to the calculated volume of the earth (by the way, the oceans volumes is only about 0.1 percent of the Earth's volume, so I was taking some liberties with significant figures).
Ramming that new sphere volume back through the sphere volume formula gave me a radius increase (sea level rise) of 2560 meters.
Edited by Minnemooseus, : Edit to try to bump links into click-ability.