Life on earth started about 3.5 billion years ago. I would assume abiogenesis happened because the conditions were right.

Would the current earth conditions allow for new abiogenesis and completely independent (in terms of phylogeny, not ecology)?

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ What do you mean by "new life"? Yes, single cell organisms reproduce to form new organisms. And yes, evolution still operates to create new traits, and ultimately a new kind of organism. $\endgroup$ – Satwik Pasani May 20 '17 at 15:36
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "However, the conditions are still right, if not much better, for new unicellular life to form and thrive"... this is completely incorrect. "Is new life still being created?"... this is a question based on a wrong premise. $\endgroup$ – user24284 May 20 '17 at 15:38
  • 5
    $\begingroup$ Highly related (eventually even duplicates): Why did abiogenesis only happen once? and How did the first self replicating organism come into existence?. You should also look at wikipedia > abiogenesis. $\endgroup$ – Remi.b May 20 '17 at 20:19
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Theories of abiogenesis invoke a process that starts with inorganic molecules, proceeds through simple organic molecules and macromolecules, and culminates in replicators and cells. Even if there are places on the planet today that favour this process, the emerging organic molecules and macromolecules would have to escape 'predation' by existing organisms. I think this makes contemporary abiogenesis even less likely. $\endgroup$ – Alan Boyd May 21 '17 at 8:55
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I agree with @AlanBoyd. So much of Earths materials interact with already existent organic life that the generation of "new life" would be extremely unlikely/improbable to the point of complete impossibility. Perhaps we could observe abiogenesis in a completely sterile environment over large expanses of time, but that seems practically impossible as well. $\endgroup$ – Malhar Khushu May 31 '17 at 15:22

I will argue that yes, it is POSSIBLE. It is possible on earth like on other planets. Given enough time, matter, and energy, "something" that resembles life will emerge. The problem I see, however, is that life has already conquered our planet, so any "new living thing" will have to compete with other long-time adapted living thing, in practice, no chance of survival. The right conditions you refer to are the ones that allowed "life as we know it" to emerge. Given other conditions (other chemicals, other energy forms, etc), something completely different will form.

Of course, without final proves, this is still speculation.

Some speculative links:




  • $\begingroup$ Why is this down-voted? I think the answer summarises fairly well what has been suggested in the comments. Maybe a bit to little detail and under-referenced - but still fair enough for a speculative topic like this. +1 $\endgroup$ – AlexDeLarge May 31 '17 at 16:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.