The world’s oldest fossils, or just rocks? Scientists at odds over 3.7 billion-year-old Greenland structures

It was an extraordinary claim: Scientists studying a rock formation in Greenland said they had discovered the Earth’s oldest fossils, a series of small, cone-shaped structures left by microbial mats some 3.7 billion years ago. The announcement in 2016 in the pages of the journal Nature generated global media coverage and potentially carried cosmic significance. These alleged fossils suggested life appeared on Earth soon after the planet cooled enough to be habitable. The implication was...

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