Geological Instant

23 Sep 2018

At ... we have an interesting headline - Chinese led team (from the Chinese Academy of Sciences) shows mass extinction happened in a geological instant. Of course, what they mean by a geological instant is nothing like the real meaning of that word. They are claiming the end of Permian mass extinction event took place between 30,000 years ago and a few thousand years ago (leaving an option open for an even smaller instant in time). The end of Permian event took place around 250 million years ago. As the study is published in the Geological Society of America Bulletin (Sept 19th 2018) one has to wonder if peer review criticism of the instant moment has been expanded to 30,000 years - yet still claiming it took place in an instant. They used radiometric dating methodology of closely spaced volcanic sediments in southern China. The event involved the Siberian flood basalt eruption - a stone's throw from northern China. This is actually the favourite of mainstream - blaming the extinctions on the Siberian Traps rather than seeing the basalt eruptions as a symptom of something more dramatic.