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Radioactive dating uses the ratios of isotopes and their specific decay products to determine the ages of rocks, fossils and other substances.Elements occur naturally in the earth, and they can tell us a lot about our Earth's past.Mt Ngauruhoe is thought to have been active for at least 2,500 years, with more than 70 eruptive periods since 1839, when European settlers first recorded a steam eruption.
However, this causes a problem for those who believe based on the Bible that life has only existed on the earth for a few thousand years, since fossils are found in rocks that are dated to be over 500 million years old by radiometric methods, and some fossils are found in rocks that are dated to be billions of years old.
Within the nucleus, we find neutrons and protons; but for now, let's just focus on the neutrons.
These neutrons can become unstable, and when they do, they release energy and undergo decay. Radioactivity occurs when the nucleus contains an excess amount of neutrons.
On the surface, radiometric dating methods appear to give powerful support to the statement that life has existed on the earth for hundreds of millions, even billions, of years.
We are told that these methods are accurate to a few percent, and that there are many different methods.