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A study published in Science Magazine today presents new evidence supporting the abiotic theory for the origin of oil, which asserts oil is a natural product the Earth generates constantly rather than a “fossil fuel” derived from decaying ancient forests and dead dinosaurs.
The lead scientist on the study ? Giora Proskurowski of the School of Oceanography at the University of Washington in Seattle ? says the hydrogen-rich fluids venting at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean in the Lost City Hydrothermal Field were produced by the abiotic synthesis of hydrocarbons in the mantle of the earth.
The abiotic theory of the origin of oil directly challenges the conventional scientific theory that hydrocarbons are organic in nature, created by the deterioration of biological material deposited millions of years ago in sedimentary rock and converted to hydrocarbons under intense heat and pressure.
While organic theorists have posited that the material required to produce hydrocarbons in sedimentary rock came from dinosaurs and ancient forests, more recent argument have suggested living organisms as small as plankton may have been the origin.
The abiotic theory argues, in contrast, that hydrocarbons are naturally produced on a continual basis throughout the solar system, including within the mantle of the earth. The advocates believe the oil seeps up through bedrock cracks to deposit in sedimentary rock. Traditional petro-geologists, they say, have confused the rock as the originator rather than the depository of the hydrocarbons.
Lost City is a hypothermal field some 2,100 feet below sea level that sits along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge at the center of the Atlantic Ocean, noted for strange 90 to 200 foot white towers on the sea bottom.
In 2003 and again in 2005, Proskurowski and his team descended in a scientific submarine to collect liquid bubbling up from Lost City sea vents.
Proskurowski found hydrocarbons containing carbon-13 isotopes that appeared to be formed from the mantle of the Earth, rather than from biological material settled on the ocean floor.
Carbon 13 is the carbon isotope scientists associate with abiotic origin, compared to Carbon 12 that scientists typically associate with biological origin.
Lost City Vents
Proskurowski argued that the hydrocarbons found in the natural hydrothermal fluids coming out of the Lost City sea vents is attributable to abiotic production by Fischer-Tropsch, or FTT, reactions.
The Fischer-Tropsch equations were first developed by Nazi scientists who created methodologies for producing synthetic oil from coal.
“Our findings illustrate that the abiotic synthesis of hydrocarbons in nature may occur in the presence of ultramafic rocks, water and moderate amounts of heat,” Proskurowski wrote.
The study also confirmed a major argument of Cornell University physicist Thomas Gold, who argued in his book “The Deep Hot Biosphere: The Myth of Fossil Fuels” that micro-organisms found in oil might have come from the mantle of the earth where, absent photosynthesis, the micro-organisms feed on hydrocarbons arising from the earth’s mantle in the dark depths of the ocean floors.
Affirming this point, Proskurowski concluded the article by noting, “Hydrocarbon production by FTT could be a common means for producing precursors of life-essential building blocks in ocean-floor environments or wherever warm ultramafic rocks are in contact with water.”
Finding abiotic hydrocarbons in the Lost City sea vent fluids is the second discovery in recent years adding weight to the abiotic theory of the origin of oil.
As WND reported in 2005, a NASA probe to Titan, the giant moon of Saturn, discovered abundant Carbon-13 methane that the agency declared to be abiotic in origin.