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The human impact on Earth's chemistry and climate has cut short the 11,700-year-old geological epoch known as the Holocene and ushered in a new one, scientists said Monday. The Anthropocene, or "new age of man," would start from the mid-20th century if their recommendation – submitted Monday to the International Geological Congress in Cape Town, South Africa – is adopted. If it can't be measured in rocks, lake sediments, ice cores, or other such formations – the criteria used to determine dozens of distinct eons, era, periods and ages going back 4 billion years – it doesn't count.This, however, is not a problem when it comes to the Anthropocene, Zalasiewicz said. Finney's main objection is that not enough time has elapsed for a new epoch.To mark the start of the Holocene, scientists chose an ice core sample drilled in 2003 from the central Greenland ice sheet at coordinates 75.10 degrees N/42.32 degrees W.
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