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Limestone and dolomite layers are too extensive for normal deposition (Talk.Origins)

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Response Article
This article (Limestone and dolomite layers are too extensive for normal deposition (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 CD203:

The occurrence of limestone deposits that are so great and so uniform defies explanation except by massive precipitation from chemical-rich waters, consistent with catastrophism, not uniformitarianism. Dolomite sediments are not being formed at all today; they also require an exceptional explanation.

Source: Morris, Henry M., 1974. Scientific Creationism, Green Forest, AR: Master Books, p. 104.


CreationWiki response: (Talk.Origins quotes in blue)

1. Uniformitarian processes explain limestone formations far better than catastrophism does:

This conclusion is based on a misunderstanding of the Genesis Flood. Among other things Talk Origins seems to be ignoring the affects of Hydrological sorting.

  • Limestones form continuously today over wide areas (such as the Caribbean) as calcium carbonate is precipitated from water directly and through the actions of organisms. Limestone formation easily fits within conventional geology.

While Talk Origins does describe the uniformitarian model of limestone formation, they fail to explain how this processes produces such large formations. However, large formations are predicted by Flood geology.

  • Limestones appear in strata interleaved between strata of sandstones and other rocks. A single event could not explain all the layers.

This is expected in Flood geology, particularly if the limestone was laid down as normal particulate sediment rather than being devolved in the water. Hydrological sorting explains how limestones would be interleaved between sandstone and other rocks.

  • Limestones often include fragile fossils that could not survive catastrophic transport.

The fossils found in limestone are all jumbled up, as would be expected from their being deposited during a Global flood, so the above Talk Origins statement seems to have no basis in fact.

Dolomites require no exceptional explanation. They form via diagenesis (a sort of chemical rearrangement in the deep subsurface) from calcite, the main ingredient of limestone.

All this shows is that, since Morris wrote the cited book, uniformitarian geologists have invented a theory of how dolomites are formed.

Creationism does not explain the origin of dolomite.

Actually, both Creation and Flood geology explain the origin of dolomite.

  1. Creation: And God said let there be dolomite and there was dolomite.
  2. Flood geology: Dolomite is basically calcite with magnesium, the inclusion of the magnesium could have occurred during and/or after the Flood.

2. Limestone could not have formed quickly from massive precipitation, because the formation of calcite releases heat. If only 10 percent of the world's limestone were formed during the Flood, the 5.6 x 1026 joules of heat released would be enough to boil the flood waters.

This assumes that it all precipitated out of solution, but if the limestone was laid down as normal particulate sediment rather than being devolved in the water, this amount of heat would not have been produced.

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