Flood geology is a concept based on the belief that most of Earth's geological record was formed by the Great Flood described in the story of Noah's ark. Fossils and fossil fuels are believed to have formed from animal and plant matter which was buried rapidly during this flood, while submarine canyons are explained as having formed during a rapid runoff from the continents at the end of the flood. Sedimentary strata are also claimed to have been predominantly laid down during or after Noah's flood and orogeny. Flood geology is a variant of catastrophism and is contrasted with geological science in that it rejects standard geological principles such as uniformitarianism and radiometric dating. For example, the Creation Research Society argues that "uniformitarianism is wishful thinking." Geologists conclude that no evidence for such a flood is observed in the preserved rock layers and moreover that such a flood is physically impossible, given the current layout of land masses. For instance, since Mount Everest currently is approximately 8.8 kilometres in elevation and the Earth's surface area is 510,065,600 km2, the volume of water required to cover Mount Everest to a depth of 15 cubits (6.8 m), as indicated by Genesis 7:20, would be 4.6 billion cubic kilometres. Measurements of the amount of precipitable water vapor in the atmosphere have yielded results indicating that condensing all water vapor in a column of atmosphere would produce liquid water with a depth ranging between zero and approximately 70mm, depending on the date and the location of the column. Nevertheless, there continue to be many adherents to flood geology, and in recent years new theories have been introduced such as catastrophic plate tectonics and catastrophic orogeny.
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