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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Abiotic Oil and the Origins of Life on Earth?

According to the article "Scientists find more oil fissures in Lake Baikal's bedrock"

...several Russian scientists going back as far as Dmitry Mendeleyev have suggested an 'abiogenic hypothesis,' according to which petroleum was formed from carbon deposits originating deep in the Earth's mantle...

Scientists find more oil fissures in Lake Baikal's bedrock

Lake Baikal: 6.3 magnitude earthquake

Note: If that is the case, then it would mean that life could have originated from hydrocarbons, something that seems very likely to me!

After reviewing the matter with the assistance of the abiotic folks over at Oil_is_Mastery (Anaconda and Oil_Is_Mastery), I've concluded that oil on Earth is actually abiotic in origin, just as it is on other moons around our solar system, meaning that sedimentary rock is not an essential part of the process. See the following two articles for a thermodynamic analysis showing that the Earth's upper mantle contains just the right conditions for producing abiotic oil:

The Constraints and the Laws of Thermodynamics upon the Evolution of Hydrocarbons: The Prohibition of Hydrocarbon Genesis at Low Pressures

The Evolution of Multicomponent Systems at High Pressures

One thing that I'd like to suggest is that life can arise from hydrocarbons, Stanley Miller experiment aside. Biological molecules (especially fatty acids) often do strikingly resemble hydrocarbons, so much so that perhaps life arose in the tar pits instead of the other way around? The existance of the first RNA and the arisal of life have been a major mystery for scientists. I know it's just mere speculation on my part at this point, but abiotic oil may be the starting point for life to occur.

Anyhow, if there is such an origin of life arising from abiotic oil tar, like I suspect, then this should be huge news.