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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CH590:

The great release of energy during the Flood caused much water from the new oceans to enter the atmosphere. This moisture fell at the poles as snow and caused the Ice Age.


Morris, Henry M., 1974. Scientific Creationism, Green Forest, AR: Master Books, pp. 126-127.


  1. Adding heat to a system tends to make it hotter. The falling moisture would have been a hot rain, not snow.

    Creationists invoke evaporation as a cooling method. They forget that all the heat lost to evaporation returns when the water condenses again and that more latent heat is then released in the freezing.

  2. A proper ice age cannot fit into a young-earth timescale. For a continent-scale glacier to form, advance enough to change the landscape, and retreat takes centuries or more, not a decade.

    Cores from ice sheets reveal annual layers that date back 160,000 years in places. Volcanic eruptions recorded in the top few thousand years match historic records. The top 4,000 or so layers have to be annual layers. It is unlikely that the other 156,000 layers were laid down in just a few years (Brinkman 1995).

  3. The earth under the ice sheets is isostatically adjusted to the mass of ice. Even if 10,000 or more feet of ice were dropped on Greenland and Antarctica in only a few years about 4,000 years ago, it would take over 12,000 years to reach the observed (today) degree of adjustment. Scandinavia and Canada are still rebounding from the disappearance of glaciers covering them at the end of the last ice age (Strahler 1987, chap. 27). It would have taken thousands of additional years for the weight of the ice to push them down in the first place.

  4. There are multiple lines of evidence for many glacial advances and retreats in the last 2 million years (Shackleton 2000).
    Furthermore, there is evidence for ice ages in the late Ordovician and in the late Carboniferous to early Permian (Strahler 1987, 265). These ice ages would have had to occur in the middle of the Flood. They cannot be easily discounted because they are indicated by just the same kind of evidence that causes creationists (and mainstream geologists) to recognize a recent ice age.

  5. Changes in climate are correlated with Milankovitch cycles, long-term cycles in the earth's orbit (Lindsay 1997).


  1. Brinkman, Matt, 1995. Ice core dating.
  2. Lindsay, Don, 1997. Astronomical cycles.
  3. Shackleton, Nicholas J., 2000. The 100,000-year ice-age cycle identified and found to lag temperature, carbon dioxide, and orbital eccentricity. Science 289: 1897-1902.
  4. Strahler, Arthur N., 1987. Science and Earth History: The Evolution/Creation Controversy, Buffalo, NY: Prometheus Books, chpt. 26-28.

Further Reading:

Alley, R. B. and M. L. Bender, 1998. Greenland ice cores: Frozen in time. Scientific American 278(2) (Feb.): 80-85.
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created 2003-6-7, modified 2003-9-6