I picked this one up mostly for research for an upcoming book, but the information is fascinating. I’m a Biblical creationist, but I never bothered to think much about the ice age and where it fit in that timeline. After reading Graham Hancock’s “Fingerprints of The Gods” I started to wonder about it, though, and found a YouTube video of Jake Hebert’s explanation of how a creationist explains the Ice Age. What I understood of that video was compelling, but there were bits I didn’t quite understand from the video, which is what led me to pick up this book.
In a nutshell, the book argues that secular scientists (who tend to be uniformitarians, or those who believe that history was very much like the present in terms of natural processes) don’t really have a good explanation for the ice age, and those explanations they do have depend upon minor variations of the earth’s orbit and tilt, which shouldn’t have been expected to have such a catastrophic global effect over the duration of time they claim it did. The dating methods they use to argue that the Ice Ages occurred millions of years ago also rely upon circular reasoning, using one rather arbitrary set of dates, massaged to arrive at the conclusion they want, in order to inform another. (Heber also discusses and refutes several of the very old dating arguments for ice cores in Greenland and in the arctic.)
Only the biblical creationist model can make use of the Noah’s flood, which sets up a catastrophic cycle of events which could easily have resulted in the Ice Age. Genesis tells us that in the flood, water didn’t just fall from the sky, but “the fountains of the deep” erupted, which would have released hot water warmed from the earth’s crust into the oceans, and also would have caused plate tectonic shifts and subsequent volcanic eruptions. The relatively warm and uniform temperatures of the oceans would have evaporated into the atmosphere, causing very humid conditions and subsequent significant precipitation in the years following the flood, while the volcanic ash would have blocked the sun’s rays from warming the earth as much as they usually do. Heber makes the point that this would have resulted in cooler summers, such that the snow which might fall from the high humidity in the winters wouldn’t be able to melt in the summertime, allowing ice sheets to advance. (Uniformitarians also agree that there were many volcanic eruptions in earth’s history, but their time scale requires that they would have occurred so far apart that they couldn’t make use of them to explain the ice age.) His arguments certainly seem compelling to me.
My rating: *****
Sexual content: none
Political content: none