Vanishing gorge described in articles in ScienceDaily 17 August 2014, BBC News 18 August 2014, and Nature Geoscience doi:10.1038/ngeo2224. In 1999 a massive earthquake (magnitude 7.6) raised a layer of bedrock in the Da’an River valley in Taiwan by 10 metres (33ft). This caused a natural dam blocking the river, but by 2004 the river started to overcome the blockage by forming a narrow gorge which grew to be 1,200m long and 20m deep by 2008.
A team of scientists from German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam (GFZ) have studied this gorge using aerial photographs and Lidar data from 2004 to 2010. They found the gorge is being rapidly eroded away by a process they named “downstream sweep erosion”. Jens Turowski, one of the GFZ scientists, explained: “A wide braided channel upstream of the gorge is necessary. The course of this channel changes regularly and it has to flow in sharp bends to run into the gorge. In these bends, the bed-load material that is transported by the river hits the upper edge of the gorge causing rapid erosion”.
According to the BBC, “All these measurements reveal some of the fastest erosion geologists have ever seen: the gorge is being eaten away from its upstream end at a rate of 17m per year”. At the current rate of erosion the GFZ team estimate this process will remove the uplifted rock layers and transform the gorge into a bevelled floodplain “in as little as 50 years”.
Editorial Comment: Notice that none of the landforms described here were formed slowly. The raised bedrock, the gorge and the bevelled floodplain are all the result of rapid catastrophic processes, resulting in a complete change in the landscape over decades, not over millions of years.
Taiwan is subject to frequent earthquakes and flooding from tropical storms, and it is these sudden earth movements and masses of water that are rapidly reshaping the surface of this small island. Obviously larger earthquakes and more water could cause greater reshaping of the earth’s surface without needing more time, so consider the geologic results of the massive earthquakes associated with the breaking open of the fountains of the great deep, along with the forty days of rain that occurred during Noah’s Flood. These processes could easily have resulted in complete re-forming of the earth’s surface starting in the year of the Flood and continuing for decades and even centuries after the flood. The many smaller catastrophes that have occurred since Noah’s day, such as the one described above, show there is no need for millions of years to explain the current earth’s rock formations and landforms. (Ref. geography, geology, catastrophism)
Evidence News vol. 14 No. 19
12 November 2014
Creation Research Australia