Department of Energy Argonne National Laboratory Office of Science NEWTON's Homepage NEWTON's Homepage
NEWTON, Ask A Scientist!
NEWTON Home Page NEWTON Teachers Visit Our Archives Ask A Question How To Ask A Question Question of the Week Our Expert Scientists Volunteer at NEWTON! Frequently Asked Questions Referencing NEWTON About NEWTON About Ask A Scientist Education At Argonne Fossil Fuels and Oil
Name: Roger
Status: Other
Age: 30s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: N/A 

What is the scientific evidence that Crude oil is a fossil fuel, and not a byproduct of the internal forces and elements of the planets? I just cant believe there has been that much organic matter deposited that deep over such a big portion of the planet.

I expect you are aware that oil is a complex hydrocarbon fluid? Where else do you find complex hydrocarbons, except in living materials? It's certainly possible the primeval simple hydrocarbons -- methane, ethane and so forth -- were subjected to some strange, unknown geological process that transformed them into complex hydrocarbons. That is, you could plausibly suggest that complex molecules normally found only in living cells can arise over time from simple molecules through natural geological processes alone, without need for any living Creator.


Click here to return to the Environmental and Earth Science Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (, or at Argonne's Educational Programs

Educational Programs
Building 360
9700 S. Cass Ave.
Argonne, Illinois
60439-4845, USA
Update: June 2012
Weclome To Newton

Argonne National Laboratory