Is There a 'Shadow Biosphere'?
Microbiologist Dr Garry Nolan says he has seen "pretty compelling" pictorial evidence which might suggest a second abiogenesis on Earth.
He was interviewed by John Michael Godier on a science podcast called Event Horizon
One part of the conversation went like this:
JMG That gets us into a 'shadow biosphere' . If you don't know what you're looking for you may not discover a second occurrence of microbial life even if was here, you might not know. Do you think we have any hope, if such a thing exists, a shadow biosphere, with current methods of studying microbes, do you think we could ever run across it, if there was a second abiogenesis on Planet Earth?
GN Yes.. I don't mean to sound conspiratorial or anything, there's someone that I'm working with who has at least pictorial evidence of such a thing. But before I get all excited about it I'm actually buying for the guy some instruments that he can use to determine if it's actually real or not. The picture evidence that I've seen is pretty compelling - so we'll see.
Whatever it is, it isn't standard, so you know it might just be a mistake on his part but we'll see. It's one of the reasons why I don't want to talk about it too deeply is because I don't like doing science by news release and I'm sure the person doesn't want the entire planet making fun of him for something that might end up being a mistake and nor do I.
But it's fun that if the question the evidence suggests that it's worth following up on. what's a few thousand dollars to develop perhaps a better understanding of it?
JMG Yes, it's a higher reward proposition because if you find a second abiogenesis of life on earth then you're going to get a Nobel Prize or something along those lines.
Note. One dictionary definition of 'abiogenesis': the original evolution of life or living organisms from inorganic or inanimate substances.