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Hydrothermal vent origin of life

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Hydrothermal vents.jpg

Ever since its discovery in 1977, scientists locate geyser-like structures called hydrothermal vents every year. Hydrothermal vents sit on ocean floors, discharging clouds of smoke underwater all over the globe. They are full of pressure and chemicals, making the water temperatures rise up to 400° Celcius (750° Farenheit). Even with this blazing heat, organisms manage to survive and reproduce under these conditions. As scientists study these sea vents, they come up with theories as to how life may have began from them. However, there are many questions raised when these theories are presented, giving creationism an edge over other theories.

Discovery of Hydrothermal Vents

Archaebacteria can survive in harsh conditions such as this geyser

Origin of Hydrothermal Vents

In 1977, scientists discovered the first hydrothermal vent along the Galapagos Islands in the Pacific Ocean. Some vents were called 'black smokers' and they used high levels of sulfides to create smoke. It was found that the smoke from the sulfide and cold ocean waters would collide, heating the water up to 400° Celsius. When hydrothermal vents are formed, serpentinization, the changing of rocks, occurs. Seabed rocks, which are rocks on the ocean floor, contain magnesium iron silicate that sparks a large reaction with the water, producing hydrogen. As a result of all these reactions, some may say they are like geysers or hot springs on the ocean floor. Discovered in 2000 are hydrothermal vents, called 'white smokers', that discharge a lighter colored volume of minerals. This is because there are different chemicals used than black smokers. Because the white smokers contain barium, calcium, and silicon. The difference in chemicals also affects the temperature as white smokers are much cooler. [1]

Origin of Life Theories

In 1993, a geochemist named Michael Russell came up with the idea that life may have started in these hydrothermal vents. Later on in 2003, he changed his theory saying that life originated from the energy created when the vent water mixed with acidic seawater. Michael Russell's theory sparked a whole new argument for evolutionists to stand behind. [2]

Of course, this is not the only theory about hydrothermal vents and the origin of life. There is another theory that archaebacteria lived and reproduced in hydrothermal vents from the very start. Many scientists believe that archaea were the ancestors of eukaryotic organisms. According to scientists, the heat and pressure of these sea vents can change the forms of archaea and DNA of all living organisms can be tracked all the way back to the sea vents. Some scientists also believe that the DNA of these archaens are closer to eukaryotic organisms rather than bacteria. Apparently, with time passing, these organisms with a single cell evolved into organisms with colonial cells. [3]

Locations of Hydrothermal Vents

Locations of hydrothermal vents around the world

Like geysers and hotsprings, hydrothermal vents can be found where volcanic activity occurs. Like the first hydrothermal vent ever discovered, many sea vents are located in mid-ocean ridges. These areas are rich in tectonic activity as tectonic plates constantly move together and separate, allowing the build up of magma beneath the seabed. [4] Ever since the first discovery in 1977, over 240 sea vents have been found. Some of these sea vents are found incredibly deep as much three miles. Common bodies of water that these sea vents are found include the Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, Arctic Ocean, and the Southern Ocean. The sea vents that have been found are mostly clumped together in colonies along the tectonic plates and areas with volcanic activity. Many marine biologists monitor and research these sea vents and discover organisms that have never been seen before. [5]

Life in Hydrothermal Vents

Tube worms are found all around sea vent

Many marine biologists monitor and research these sea vents and discover organisms that have never been seen before. These different organism are able to survive in the conditions of hydrothermal vents. These organisms include crabs, clams, worms, shrimps, mussels and more. The diets of these organisms expand on different regions. Many of them feed on dead animals that sink to the ocean floor while some organisms will feed directly on the sea vents. Bacteria will feed on the sea vents to create a process called chemosynthesis. Like an ecosystem, the smaller animals eat the bacteria while being preyed on by larger animals. At the top of the food chain sits the giant tube worms that can grow up to eight feet. The waters are rich in resources for the organisms to the point where there are millions of shrimps at the bottom of the ocean. [6]

Debunking the Origin of Life Theory

Although all these theories that life originated from hydrothermal vents have emerged, there are numerous contradictions. Even if organic molecules were formed back when the earth began, there is no evidence that those organic molecules and amino acids joined together in order to form polymers such as nucleic acids or proteins. Because amino acids are involved, this process can not progress since "Two amino acids do not spontaneously join in water", according to the National Academy of Sciences. This means that polymers are unable to join together under water, breaking back down into amino acids and organic molecules. Because of this barrier, proteins can not be produced, proving this theory false. [7]

There are also numerous passages in the Bible that inform along the lines of God creating living organisms:

And God said, “Let the earth bring forth living creatures according to their kinds—livestock and creeping things and beasts of the earth according to their kinds.” And it was so. Genesis 1:24

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Mark 2:10



  1. Deep Sea Hydrothermal Vents National Geographic. Web. Accessed November 25, 2018. Author Unknown
  2. Brazil, Rachel Hydrothermal vents and the origins of life Chemistry World. Web. Accessed November 25, 2018.
  3. Scoville, Heather Early Life Theories - Hydrothermal Vents Thought Co.. Web. Updated January 23, 2018.
  4. Hydrothermal Vents Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Web. Accessed November 25, 2018. Author Unknown.
  5. Deep-Sea Vent Discoveries Science on a Sphere. Web. Accessed November 25, 2018. Author Unknown.
  6. Creatures of the Deep Sea Sea and Sky. Web. Accessed November 25, 2018. Author Unknown.
  7. Luskin, Casey Top Five Problems with Current Origin-of-Life Theories Evolution News. Web. December 12, 2012.