THE RISE OF INDIA CAUSES THE LAST
The first section of this book presents
the "safe, conservative" version of Ben's Antipodal Impact Theory. A key part
of the "safe, conservative" aspect of this version is merely viewing India and
other continents as entities that always existed. In one sense, the continental
material has always existed, because it consists primarily of the lighter
felsic material that floats above the denser mafic material found on the ocean
bottoms. While additional felsic material cannot be magically created or
destroyed, the shape and movement of this felsic material can be altered.
Therefore, while the Standard Theory treats the continents as merely
pieces of a floating jigsaw puzzle, the full version of Ben's Antipodal Impact
Theory goes beyond this. The full version of Ben's Theory hypothesizes the
concept that extremely large impacts will not only form antipodal mantle
plumes, but the pressure that is created is so great that it will also cause
the uplift of a separate continental tectonic plate. This new continental plate
can contain both felsic and mafic components. In some cases, this new
continental plate can contain pieces of several previous plate sections, now
united in this new continental plate.
The perimeter of the new
continental plate will be created by crack propagation emanating from the
raging antipodal hotspot. In the case of an extremely large impact, the size of
the antipodal mantle plume will be large enough that it will encompass the
physical antipode. Therefore, the fractured lithosphere at the antipode will
become a raging hotspot, as the liquid magma takes the path of least
This chapter will introduce an expanded view of the uplift
of an Indian continent at the antipode of the Chicxulub impact. The diagrams at
the end of the chapter will illustrate the approximate size and shape of the
Indian continent. These diagrams will also show its journey during the past 65
Once upon a
time, 65 MYA, the Old Australian continent was resting peacefully in the South
The Old Australian continent was shaped like an
upside-down South America, with a long northern tail and a ridge of mountains
(the Great Dividing Range) running down the eastern end, like a spine.
Then, all of a sudden, a large six-mile-in-diameter meteor slammed into
the Earth at Chicxulub in Mexico. The meteor created immense destruction at the
impact site. The huge impact sent earthquake shockwaves through the lithosphere
and a huge pulse of pressure through the semi-liquid mantle.
Old Australian continent felt bad for its North American cousin continent, but
it also felt secure in the knowledge that it was located on the opposite side
of the Earth from the impact.
After all, being
located farther away from the impact than any other point on the Earth should
convey the best possible situation for surviving the impact effects, right?
Unfortunately for sleepy Old Australia, the area
around the antipode of a large impact site is one of the worst places to be.
Within a few hours, the sleepy Old Australian continent saw part of its
tail uplifted and the small end of its tail thrown apart. A big, bad Indian
continent was uplifted from the ocean floor right in front (to the north) of
the Australian continent and the tail of the Indian continent took most of its
material right from the beginning of the tail of the Old Australian continent.
The rest of the Old Australian continent's tail was forced apart and became its
own separate tectonic plate (the Philippines Plate).
As a final insult,
the twisting motion the northern movement of the new Indian Continent pulled
New Australia northward, further separating it from its former top half, which
now continued to drift and sink down to the South Pole, where it became East
At the exact antipode of the Chicxulub impact, the Indian
continent was endowed with a prodigious hotspot, which spewed forth magma and
noxious gases for up to 100,000 years on a regular basis and intermittently for
up to a million years (creating the Deccan traps in India. Author's note: Traps
are stepped hillsides created by basalt lava flows).
At this point, I
should clarify what I mean by the phrase "uplifting a continent." What I mean
is that the perimeter area of the new continental tectonic plate is sheared by
crack propagation and the newly formed continental tectonic mass is uplifted
somewhat. At a later point in time it will subside back to normal. The
important feature is the idea that this continental tectonic mass has its own
defined edges and its directed motion from the mantle plume beneath it.
THE SHAPE OF INDIA
Standard Theory doesn't really address the shape of India. The best summary of
the position of the Standard Theory would be: "It is what it is."
Antipodal Impact Theory offers very clear reasons why India is shaped the way
that it is, including the eastward bend near the bottom, the offset location of
Sri Lanka, the west-to-east slope of the land and the formation of the Western
Ghats mountain range.
Ben's Antipodal Impact Theory sees India as the
tail of a continental "blob with a tail" uplift event. As the Indian tail moved
northward behind the leading blob of the continent, it was configured as a
normal, triangular tail.
However, when the front end of the continental
blob met extreme resistance while running into the Himalayan Plateau, the
energy and momentum from the rest of the continent caused most of the continent
to pivot to the west, towards an area of less resistance. The tail followed
along with this pivot, but the weaker, lower part of the tail bent as it moved
west (meeting frictional resistance and raising up the Ghats) and even broke
off at the tip (Sri Lanka).
The slope of the land from west-to-east was
caused by the Indian tail moving over the slower-moving hotspot on the western
side during the early days from 65 MYA to 60 MYA.
The westward movement
of the Indian tail is further corroborated in "an Alfred Wegener moment". The
upper eastern edge of India matches almost perfectly with the coast of Burma.
They look like they fit together because, at one time, they did fit together.
After they parted, the silt from the Ganges river helped to fill in the low
lying area of Bangladesh, over millions of years. (Author's note: Alfred
Wegener was a famous German meteorologist turned geologist, who formulated the
theory of continental drift back in 1912, due, in part to the fact that Africa
and South America seemed to fit together. He amassed much other fossil
evidence, as well, but was unable to overcome the lack of a reasonable
mechanism for movement of solid rock. He was vindicated two decades after his
death by the discovery of the mid-ocean ridges and sea floor spreading. Wegener
asserted that centrifugal forces caused the continents to move apart. This lack
of a viable mechanism doomed his theory to obscurity, initially.)
RARE MANTLE PLUMES
Standard Theory describes the volcanic eruptions at the Deccan traps and the
Siberian traps as being the result of rare mantle plumes. There is no really
solid reason given for their existence. The best that the Standard Theory can
come up with is the idea that these plumes are some kind of convectional heat
relief from the interior.
Ben's Antipodal Impact Theory shows that the
plumes that caused the Deccan traps and the Siberian traps are the natural
result of the relief of kinetic energy pressure at the weakened, pulverized
area that is antipodal to a major cosmic impact.
Why do so
many continents look like "a blob with a tail"? The Standard Theory doesn't
even recognize this shape as an issue.
Yet we can see that continents
are shaped this way. Once we understand the nature of combination continents
(i.e. North America, Antarctica and Eurasia) it is easy to see how the
continents have been created in this same, general shape.
outstanding exception, Australia, is easily explained by the uplift of India
destroying part of Australia's tail and scattering the rest of the tail.
However, once we know what we are looking for, we can see how the
Australian tail fits together and how Australia's Great Dividing Range
mountains continue up through New Guinea, Borneo, the Philippines and even
One of the most satisfying parts of the Australian puzzle is
finding how New Guinea fits right into the Australian Gulf of Carpentaria, just
like a piece in a jigsaw puzzle. The Cape York Peninsula was stretched out like
a piece of taffy when New Guinea was forced apart from Australia 65 MYA by the
rise of the Indian continent.
Another exception, Eastern Antarctica,
was once part of the Australian "blob" but was sheared from Australia, probably
as a result of the torsional pressure put on Australia during the uplifting of
India 65 MYA. This half of the original Australian "blob" went its own way and
ended up conjoined with Western Antarctica, which is a small continental mass
that was probably created by the Manicouagan impact 214 MYA.
examination of the Australia/Eastern Antarctica connection reveals that this
separation was probably a two stage event. First, the impact object that caused
the Permian extinction 250 MYA provided torsional stress which started the
separation and moved Eastern Antarctica faster to the south than the rest of
the old Australian Continent. Then the Chicxulub impact created the Indian
Continent and drew today's Australia to the north.
boundaries of the Australian Indian plate are right where Ben's Antipodal
Impact Theory would predict that they would be, in relation to each other.
Furthermore, one of the standard models shows a separate Indian plate (the
other doesn't) right where Ben's Antipodal Impact Theory would predict, based
upon the westward shifting and pivoting as the Indian continent ran into
extreme resistance. The Standard Theory gives no reason for any of this.
SEASHELLS IN THE HIMALAYAS
Until the advent of the theory of plate tectonics, geologists had great
difficulty in explaining how all the ancient sea-life fossils were found in the
Himalayas. The theory of plate tectonics allowed them to explain the seeming
paradox. The common interpretation of this theory stated that, as the
subcontinent of India approached Asia, it buckled up the sea floor in front of
it and pushed the buckled sea floor into Asia.
However, the Standard
Theory does not agree with itself when examined closely. According to the
Standard Theory, as India and Asia approached each other, the ocean floor
should have been subducting below either the Indian or the Asian plate
that's how the subduction model works (Oceanic-Continental Convergence, see
Once the two continental masses ran into each other (they
ran out of subducted sea floor between them), then they should have pushed each
other upwards. There should have been little or no sea floor involved.
And yet there are prolific remnants of an ancient sea floor all
throughout the Himalayas.
Ben's Antipodal Impact Theory
has no difficulty in explaining the Himalayan seashell paradox. The Indian
continent's "blob" was uplifted virtually entirely from the sea floor. Only the
tail of the Indian continent consisted of land that was not from the sea floor.
When the Indian "blob" smashed into Asia, it was elevated and
compressed, along with the Asian plate. Since the elevated and compressed land
from the Indian "blob" was virtually all composed of sea floor, it is only
natural that the Himalayas would be chock full of the remains of ancient sea
EXPLAINING INDIA'S SPEEDY MOTION
The new Indian continent was imbued with significant northwesterly
motion by the directional energy of the mantle plume beneath it. The
directional energy was so strong that it forced the mafic front edge of
uplifted seafloor part of the new continent over the top of the oceanic plate
next to it, forcing this oceanic plate to subduct. At the other end of the
oceanic part of the new continental tectonic plate, the mafic oceanic crust
would be forced to subduct beneath the felsic material that made up the
northern edge of the Indian continent that we recognize today (which was torn
out of the top of the tail of Old Australia).
For years, geologists
have tried and failed to explain why India moved towards Asia at the
geologically rapid speed of around 18 cm per year, while all other continental
plates move at the top speed of around 6 cm per year.
This scenario of
India's creation and movement based upon the full version of Ben's Antipodal
Impact Theory will finally explain this mystery.
answer is telescoping subduction. As seen in the diagrams at the end of this
chapter, the new Indian continent that was created 65 MYA included a
significant amount of mafic oceanic crust as part of its leading edge.
At the point of uplift, the leading edge of the uplifted oceanic crust,
imbued with forward motion, rose over its neighboring oceanic crust, forcing
that neighboring oceanic crust to subduct. This forward pressure also pushed
against the subducting oceanic plate, forcing it to subduct under the Asian
plate, as well.
Furthermore, the felsic continental crust portion of
the new continent rose over the mafic oceanic portion of the new continent,
forcing subduction at this location, too.
Therefore, subduction was
occurring at three separate locations, all occurring at the maximum speed of
approximately 6 cm per year. The cumulative effect, from the fixed point of
view of the Asian plate, was an Indian continent that was approaching at 18 cm
per year. As each section of the "telescope" was completely subducted, the
speed was reduced by 6 cm per year. However, since the Tethys Sea plate was
being subducted at both ends, those two subductions would run out of material
at the same time, leading to a single reduction from 18 cm per year to 6 cm per
INSPECTING THE DEBRIS FIELD
Now it is time to look at the voyage that the Indian continent began 65 MYA and
to examine the debris field that it left behind.
In fact, the islands
and land forms of the area between Australia and Asia are more properly seen as
a debris field, resulting from four separate but related events.
1. Continental Uplift The uplift of the
continent of India can be seen as a hydraulic elevating event related to the
impact of a cosmic object at Chicxulub 65 MYA. The angled nature of the
off-center impact would have transferred directional energy to the earth's
mantle. This directional energy, streaming around the heavy earth's core, would
have resulted in the formation of the uplifted Indian continent
continent in the shape of a "blob with a tail" and a continent with a powerful
forward momentum in the direction of the northwest.
While the "blob"
part of the Indian continent was uplifted from the sea floor, most of the tail
was uplifted and separated from the beginning of the tail of the Australian
continent. This continental uplifting eruption not only took a triangular chunk
out of the Australian continent's tail, but it also fractured the middle of
Australia's tail and sent the pieces moving away (but not too far from their
Thus, the island of New Guinea was separated from
the continent of Australia. It is relatively easy to see, in an
Alfred-Wegener-kind-of-moment, how New Guinea fits back into Australia, and,
with a slight twist of the island, how its mountains continue the chain of the
Great Dividing Range. This mountain range continues on farther to the north
into Borneo, the Philippines and even to Taiwan. Borneo and the other islands
were pushed north (and Borneo was later dragged to the east by the second
2. Continental Movement of the "Blob" The new Indian
continent, having been given tremendous forward momentum to the northwest by
the rotational transfer of energy from the Chicxulub impact, moved rapidly in
that direction, with the "blob" part of the continent forcing telescoping
subduction in three separate places.
As the continent moved north in an
arc (being a surface phenomenon, and affected by the Coriolis effect, it
gradually moved to the north and later to the east), the eastern edge of the
"blob" pushed up land along the inside of the arc in which it was moving (the
Thailand and Malaysian peninsula, as well as the eastern half of Sumatra. The
western part of Sumatra was formed by the fourth event), while pulling that
area slightly northward, as well (producing the slight northward move of Borneo
as compared to the rest of Australia and its fractured tail, which was moving
northward, but not as fast.). 131,132
Movement of the "Tail" The tail of the Indian continent followed behind
the blob, and, because it followed the same arc described by the blob, it
veered a bit to the west and pulled the land apart to the east of it, creating
the Sunda trench. In making the tight turn of the arc, the beginning of the
tail pushed up the Andaman, Nicobar, Banyak and Mentawai islands to the east of
the Sunda tranch (This arc turn is much like a long truck making a turn
the middle and back of the truck will run over the curb if the driver doesn't
make a wide turn. The blob was not a good driver. The only thing that prevented
even more pile up of land at those islands was the fact that the tail had no
strong connection to the lower surface, the way a truck's rear wheels would.
The tail was free to pull out to the west and it did. This enhanced the
pulling-apart effect of the Sunda trench.).
The Sunda trench is often referred to as a double
trench, because there seem to be two separate lines of creation to it. It may
well be that one line was created by the eastern edge of the blob and the other
by the tail. 36
The tail had a further adventure in store
for it once the blob crashed into the Asian mainland. As the blob encountered
increasing resistance while folding up the Himalayan mountains in the east,
some of the blob and all of the tail slid and pivoted over to an area of less
resistance. The top of the tail split away from the land that it had pushed up
in Burma. In another Alfred-Wegener-kind-of-moment, it is easy to see that the
east coast of India fits nicely into the west coast of Burma.
at a map of today's Earth may seem to show that there wasn't all that much high
area on the east side of Tibetan Plateau. Why would this area cause the change
of direction of a whole continental mass? There doesn't seem to be enough of a
barrier to force this action.
However, new research by Earth
scientists at Syracuse University reveals the fact that the eastern Tibetan
Plateau was much more extensive 40 MYA. In their paper entitled "Stable
isotopes reveal high southeast Tibetan Plateau margin since the Paleogene,"
Gregory D. Hoke et. al. write: "By the Eocene epoch (approximately 40 million
years ago), the southern part of the plateau extended some 600 miles more to
the east than previously documented. This discovery upends a popular model for
plateau formation." 138
As the Indian tail moved west and
north, it encountered resistance on its western side. This resistance raised up
the Western Ghats mountains, caused the bend near the bottom of the peninsula
and the eventual break-off of the tip (Sri Lanka).
4. Movement of the
Follow-on Hotspot - At the antipode of the Chicxulub impact 65 MYA, huge
earthquake forces from the impact came together from all directions in a
colossal hammer blow to the Earth's crust at that point. The Earth's crust
would be pulverized. This weak spot would provide the perfect place for magma
under pressure to escape to the surface, creating a huge hotspot.
hotspot would not be stationary. It would have the same strong thrust of
momentum as the continent of India and in the same direction. However, the
hotspot would be an anchored characteristic
anchored to the mantle
whereas the Indian continent would be a surface characteristic, floating
(in a directed motion) on top of the mantle.
The hotspot would move in
more of a straight line to the northwest. Its path would not appear to be a
straight line because it would move (much like a plasma torch cutting through
the earth's crust) through latitudes where the surface of the earth is moving
faster and then (after crossing the equator), slower. The hotspot, although
imparted with the same initial momentum as the Indian continent, would move
more slowly because it would have a more difficult task, cutting through the
crust rather than forcing rapid subduction along the surface.
initial location of the hotspot would be below the center of the blob, near the
beginning of the tail, due to the blob being uplifted slightly past the
antipode because of the directional power of the impact force.
initial eruption of the hotspot would be massive and would be within the
boundaries of the new continent. However, after several million years, the
continent would far outdistance the hotspot. Future eruptions would form their
own islands, starting with East Timor and moving up through Java and onto the
west side of Sumatra.
It is especially interesting to notice how the
line of the moving hotspot veers slightly to the west after crossing the
equator, confirming the anchored nature of the hotspot as opposed to the
Coriolis-affected remains of the Indian continent phenomena (the Andaman
islands, the Sunda trench, etc.)., which all veered to the east.
THE BASEBALL THEORY OF TANDEM
This brings us to something that I will call
"The Baseball Theory of Tandem Movement" for uplifted continents and their
In a baseball game, when a batter hits a line drive and
accidentally lets go of the bat at the exact time of impact, the bat and the
ball go in the same direction. However, the ball usually goes much farther than
the bat. Often the ball will go well into the outfield, while the bat is lucky
to make it to the edge of the infield.
In baseball, the difference
between the movement of these two objects can be explained by the difference in
force applied to each object in relation to its weight. In relation to cosmic
impacts, the difference in movement is descriptive of the difference between
the movement of an antipodal hotspot and the movement of the uplifted continent
associated with that hotspot. The uplifted continent, like the baseball, goes
farther and faster than the hotspot, which is analogous to the baseball bat.
The reason for the faster movement of the uplifted continent is the
fact that it encounters less resistance. The continent sits on top of the
crust. The continent merely has to force subduction along the surface as it
moves on its directional voyage. The hotspot, however, has to crash through
miles of congealed rock all the way down to the mantle
more difficult and frictional journey.
As a result, the affected
continent breaks away from the hotspot and moves forward, with the hotspot
trailing after. In cases where there is an antipodal hotspot but no continental
uplift, the hotspot has its own solo journey (analogous to a baseball hitter
swinging at a ball and missing, but accidentally letting go of the bat).
Now we can follow the tandem trail of India and its hotspot.
The Indian continent was created by continental uplift at the antipode
of the Chicxulub impact site 65 MYA. The original hotspot would have been
located at the Deccan traps. According to the Baseball Theory of Tandem
Movement, the Indian continent would have moved more quickly than its hotspot.
However, its hotspot would be trailing behind in roughly the same path.
The Indonesian island chain, headed by the giant super-volcano at Lake
Toba (the biggest super-volcano in the world) at the northwest end of the
island of Sumatra and trailing a string of smaller, leftover-but-still-strong
volcanoes, is an ideal candidate for the track of the Chicxulub antipodal
hotspot. The Indonesian island chain is the trail of the hotspot. The Indian
continent, itself, created two sets of "islands". The first set of islands was
pushed up by the eastern edge of the blob and the second set of islands was
pushed up by the tightly-turning tail.
The older, eastern sides of Java
and Sumatra, as well as the Thailand and Malay peninsulas were created by the
eastern edge of the continental blob. The chain of islands just off of the west
coast of Indonesia are the result of the Indian continent's tightly turning
These islands continue on up to the Nicobar and Andaman islands
like a string of pearls on a necklace. Hansel and Gretel couldn't have left a
better trail of breadcrumbs.
Another way to
look at the evidence left behind by the uplift and movement of the Indian
continent and the island arc created by the follow-on hotspot is to compare
this evidence to tool marks that are found on today's manufactured products.
For instance, an experienced fastener engineer can examine a threaded
bolt, look at the tool marks, and determine how it was made:
1. Small fin marks under the head of the bolt
will indicate that the bolt was formed on an open die header, rather than a
solid die header.
2. Very small concentric circles on a washer face
under the head will indicate that the washer face was shaved, rather than cold
3. The shape and striations on the screw threads will indicate
whether they were formed by rolling, shaving or grinding.
chamfered point at the thread end will show an irregular cutoff or a smooth
shaved surface, depending upon whether it was cold formed or shaved.
The shape and verticality of the walls of the slot in the head will show if it
was cold formed on the header or milled on a separate slotting machine.
In the same way, we can examine the tool marks left
behind by the Indian continent and its follow-on hotspot.
1. The Sunda trench (created by the "pulling
away" of the Indian continent's tail).
2. The Indonesian island arc
(created by the follow-on hotspot).
3. The Thailand and Malaysian
peninsulas (created by the eastern edge of the tight-turning Indian continent).
4. The Andaman and Nicobar islands and the islands off the eastern
coast of Sumatra (pushed up by the tight-turning Indian tail from an already
scoured bottom or created by forced subduction ) .
5. Borneo, the
Philippines, New Guinea and Taiwan (the shattered remains of the Australian
6. The Himalayan mountains (created by the Indian
continent crashing into Asia).
7. The shape of India (the triangular
tail formed by the continental uplift and bent as it slid to the west, breaking
off at the end of the tail, creating Sri Lanka).
8. The slope from west
to east of the Indian plain (caused by by the uplift of the western side by the
follow-on hotspot as the continent passed over it, as evidenced by the
underlying layer of basalt lava).
9. The Western Ghats mountains
(created as the Indian continent slid west after its initial collision with
Asia was blunted).
10. The Bangladesh lowlands (created by the silt of
the Ganges river over millions of years, after the Indian continent slid west,
leaving a gap between India and Burma).
11. The Philippines plate
(created from the Australian plate after the Indian tail and the follow-on
hotspot cut it off from its parent).
The tool marks tell the
In today's world of CSI, NCIS and other TV crime dramas, these
tool marks could also be called forensic evidence. In the case of the uplift
and movement of the Indian continent, there is more than enough forensic
evidence for a conviction.
The concept of tool marks is also useful in
looking at the evidence that is available for other, even older, major
The Earth is an active planet. It moves and changes and
erases tool marks over time. While the tool marks of the most recent major
extinction event are still eminently visible, those from the more distant past
have been ground away, eroded, subducted and covered over. These older tool
marks can be tough to find. But that does not mean that they never existed.
This wearing away of earthly tool marks can be compared to the
manufacture of bolts for the aerospace industry. Unlike common industrial
bolts, high performance aerospace bolts cannot afford to have any marks that
might lead to the propagation of a crack. Therefore, the surface of an
aerospace bolt must go through a grinder (a very expensive process) to remove
any marks. The result, to the eye of a fastener engineer who is used to seeing
common industrial bolts, is a bolt that looks as though it was never
manufactured. The evidence is gone.
We face the same problem with
evidence for really ancient major extinctions.
Many people have
suspected that the Chicxulub impact and the vast eruptions at the Deccan traps
were related and that they led to the great extinction 65 MYA. However, finding
a convincing connection has always been elusive.
It is as though we
were playing the game of "Clue". We always thought that the solution to the
murder was Colonel Mustard in the library with a rope. However, we couldn't
find the rope, we weren't sure about the library and the Colonel always had a
Now we've conclusively determined that it was
the library and we've found the rope with the Colonel's DNA all over it.
The series of maps
at the end of this chapter depicts the creation of the Indian continent 65 MYA
and its journey during the past 65 million years.
Is this the exact
model of what happened to the world at the antipode of the Chicxulub impact?
Maybe not. But, it's very close to that.
What this model does do is to
satisfy these many disparate conditions:
1. The Great Dividing Range is shattered in its
northern regions and the debris ends up in today's location in this model.
2. The Chicxulub antipodal hotspot starts out at 30ºS latitude in
3. The great flood of lava at the subsurface of the western
side of India is explained in this model
4. The Australian continent
and its attendant parts move mostly north and somewhat east in this model.
5. The older land on the eastern side of Sumatra and the newer land on
the western side of Sumatra are explained by this model.
6. The arc of
Indonesian volcanoes, beginning around East Timor and moving up through the
island of Sumatra AND THEN STOPPING is explained in this model.
creation of the Western Ghats mountain range in India is explained and placed
in the proper time line after the creation of the land tilt from west to east
in this model.
8. The creation of Borneo, New Guinea, the Philippines
islands and Taiwan, as well as the creation of the Philippines tectonic plate
is explained in this model.
9. The creation of the Indian continent and
its movement and its shape is explained in this model.
10. The creation
of the Thailand and Malay peninsulas and the eastern sides of Sumatra and Java
are explained in this model.
11. The creation of the Andaman and
Nicobar Islands and the islands off the west coast of Sumatra are explained in
12. The creation of the Sunda trench is explained in this
model. See the following illustrations for a graphic depiction of the journey
of the Indian continent from 65 MYA until the present day: