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Re: Did Dinosaurs BECOME Oil?

 From: Willa25743@aol.com
 >While talking to my sister about dinosaurs, she commented that they "all
 > turned to oil." ...
 > I'm not really current with theories on how oil was formed, but my perception
 > is that oil deposits more probably resulted much earlier from organic (even
 > unicellular) matter deposited and fossilized at the mouths of prehistoric
 > rivers.

This is roughly correct.  There is some reason to suppose that oil
formation is still going on, for instance in the Mississippi Delta.
 > * There is little or no connection between dinosaurs and the formation of
 > oil.

True, as far as I can tell.
 > * The dinosaur->oil connection is a widely-held misconception, especially
 > among baby boomers.
This seems likely, but I have no basis for certainty on this matter.

 > * Petroleum's sources are generally/always/often from earlier geologic times.

I think most economically important oil reserves do date from
Paleozoic times, but I would hesitate to say that oil deposits
in general *always* are that old.
 > * Crude oil was formed in many ways, e.g. the disputed theory linking a
 > Swedish asteroid impact crater with oil deposits.

I would place little credance on that "theory" - the guy is pretty
much a crackpot.

>From what little I have read, my impression is that oil mostly
forms from the degradation of microplankton when rapidly buried
and heated, as might happen in a major river delta.  I have not
heard any serious proposals for any other substantial source.
 > * There's little or nothing we can do to dispell this fanciful notion. It
 > will have to fade away on its own. We should ignore/dispute dino-to-oil
 > comments disseminated by mass media.

I disagree here.  Folk tales do not fade away on their own.  If we
who know do not actively correct these things, they will last

swf@elsegundoca.attgis.com              sarima@netcom.com

The peace of God be with you.