Scientists believe they may have found Earth’s oldest life — 4.2 billion years old

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What’s crazy is this is only about 300M years after the Earth formed. The entire planet cooled from magma to rock, cooled even more for water to collect on the surface, and started life in essentially the blink of an eye, in geologic timescale. If life can start so soon after the formation of a planet then life might be much more common in the universe.


It’s looking more and more like either abiogenesis is a fast process, Earth was seeded with life from elsewhere or the start of life here was one hell of a fluke.


This is interesting. Also, what a serious bummer being the guy with the electron microscope who gets handed a bag of rocks.


Color me skeptical. This is based on perceived microfossils. There are *lots* of geological processes that resemble microfossils, so the null hypothesis in my book is that they’re non-biological in origin, and such an incredible extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence. I may be a bit jaded by the astrobiology cottage industry of “discovering” microfossils in meteorites. Such fossils have been repeatedly discovered and subsequently disproven. But every time the research just starts over again: “okay, we were wrong about that last one, but *this* time we totally found a fossil proving extraterrestrial life!” Sorry for the rant.


In four billion years… hockey