It is also possible that some of the carbon-14 in the fossil and coal samples arises from the conversion of nitrogen-14 to carbon-14 driven by the decay of radioactive elements in the environment.
Because fossils and coal derive from once-living organisms, there will be plenty of nitrogen-14 contained in these specimens.
Our planet was pegged at a youthful few thousand years old by Bible readers (by counting all the "begats" since Adam) as late as the end of the 19th century, with physicist Lord Kelvin providing another nascent estimate of 100 million years.
Kelvin defended this calculation throughout his life, even disputing Darwin's explanations of evolution as impossible in that time period.
According to young-earth creationists (YECs), if the coal samples and fossils are truly millions of years old (as the scientific community claims), then there shouldn’t be any trace of carbon-14 in these samples. It’s because the half-life of carbon-14 is about 5,700 years, meaning that all the detectable carbon-14 should have disappeared from the samples long before they reach even 100,000 years of age., I respond to this young-earth argument, suggesting three mechanisms that can account for carbon-14 in fossil remains (and by extension, in geological materials) from an old-earth perspective.
For some reason, which I have not yet figured out, at least one person per week has been asking me about the Carbon-14 Radiometric Dating Technique.By comparing the amount of each isotope in a sample, the age of the sample can be calculated.Radiometric dating not only supports the geologic "evolution" of the Grand Canyon, it validates a central tenet in a much different theory of evolution - a theory introduced by Charles Robert Darwin in his 1859 publication, An important criticism of Darwin's theory of evolution was its requirement for "an almost infinite number of generations", when evidence at the time suggested earth was less than 100 million years old.For example, environmental uranium and thorium would readily infuse into the interiors of fossils, and as these elements decay, the high energy they release will convert nitrogen-14 to carbon-14.Employing a “back-of-the-envelope” flux analysis, Vernon Cupps—a YEC affiliated with the Institute of Creation Research—has challenged my assessment, concluding that neither (1) the production of carbon-14 from cosmic radiation nor (2) the decay of radioactive isotopes in the environment is sufficient to account for the carbon-14 detected in fossil and geological samples..