Earlier this year, scientists from New York and Sweden published the results of their sweeping study of 5 million DNA barcodes from about 100,000 different animal species. As reported by phys.org on May 28, 2018, the results are “sure to jostle, if not overturn, more than one settled idea about how evolution unfolds.”
In addition to a shocking absence of genetic diversity, the authors were stunned to conclude that about 9 out of every 10 species on Earth appear to have come into being at about the same time, apparently sometime between 100,000 and 200,000 years ago. Study co-author David Thaler said of the findings, “This conclusion is very surprising, and I fought against it as hard as I could.”
One unavoidable possibility these results raise is articulated in the phys.org report, which asks, “Was there some catastrophic event 200,000 years ago that nearly wiped the slate clean?” In part one of this two-part presentation, Thunderbolts colleague Peter Mungo Jupp begins a comprehensive and radical re-assessment of the questions: how old is the Earth, and how has life unfolded upon it?