Radiometric dating not accurate

The average difference between a radiocarbon date of a terrestrial sample such as a tree, and a shell from the marine environment is about 400 radiocarbon years (see Stuiver and Braziunas, 1993).

This apparent age of oceanic water is caused both by the delay in exchange rates between atmospheric CO2 and ocean bicarbonate, and the dilution effect caused by the mixing of surface waters with upwelled deep waters which are very old (Mangerud 1972).

The effect of this has been to almost double the amount of C14 activity in terrestrial carbon bearing materials (Taylor, 1987).

A CRA is derived using an age calculation based upon the decay corrected activity of the absolute radiocarbon standard (1890 AD wood) which is in equilibrium with atmospheric radiocarbon levels (as mentioned previously, 1890 wood is no longer used as the primary radiocarbon standard, instead Oxalic Acid standards I and II were correlated with the activity of the original standard).

In order to ascertain the ages of samples which were formed in equilibrium with different reservoirs to these materials, it is necessary to provide an age correction.

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[A Conventional Radiocarbon Age or CRA, does not take into account specific differences between the activity of different carbon reservoirs.

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