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Average soil depth is consistent with young earth (Talk.Origins)

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Response Article
This article (Average soil depth is consistent with young earth (Talk.Origins)) is a response to a rebuttal of a creationist claim published by Talk.Origins Archive under the title Index to Creationist Claims.

Claim CD620:

Only 300 to 1,000 years are required to build an inch of topsoil. The average depth of topsoil is about eight inches, indicating an earth less than about 8,000 years old.

Source: Pathlights, n.d. The age of the earth.


CreationWiki response: (Talk.Origins quotes in blue)

1. Soil gets eroded as well as built up, so the average depth does not mean much. Where soil does exist under steady conditions, it does not build up continuously; there is a maximum depth to it determined by climate, ground composition, slope, and local ecology. The depth of a soil says very little about its age.

Talk Origins is correct on this point, but that says more about their cited source than it does about Creation science. The fact is, they did not select a particularly good one.

What this data actually shows is that average topsoil depth is consistent with a young Earth; it is not sufficent to prove a young Earth.

2. Some soils require long times to develop. R. Meyer (1997, 120) listed seven types of soil that take more than 50,000 years to form; some took on the order of a million years or more.
  • Meyer, Robert, 1997. Paleoalterites and Paleosols: Imprints of Terrestrial Processes in Sedimentary Rocks. Rotterdam: A.A. Balkema.

Such long estimates of soil formation time are based on uniformitarian assumptions. In this case, the article is dealing with Paleoalterites and Paleosols, which are interpreted by uniformitarian geologists as fossilized soil. However this interpretation is based entirely on uniformitarian assumptions, so using this as an argument against creationists is a case of Your theory does not work under my theory, so your theory must be wrong.

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