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Andrew Snelling

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Andrew A. Snelling is an Australian scientist and creationist, currently working for Answers in Genesis in the United States, although still living in Brisbane.

Qualifications and career

Snelling earned his PhD in geology in 1982 at the University of New South Wales with his thesis A geochemical study of the Koongarra uranium deposit, Northern Territory, Australia. He worked as a field, mine, and research scientist in the mining industry for six years in various Australian states during and after his studies, and as a geological consultant to the Koongarra uranium project between 1983 and 1992.

He joined the Creation Science Foundation (now Creation Ministries International in 1983, where he was the senior research scientist and editor of the Journal of Creation. In 1997 Snelling became part of the newly-formed RATE project led by the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) to research radiometric dating from a creationist perspective. In 1998 he left CSF and joined ICR in San Diego (although still living in Brisbane), and in 2007 became Answers in Genesis' Director of Research, and is editor of their on-line Answers Research Journal.


Snelling has been the focus of a number of attacks by anti-creationists, including claiming that he presented two different faces depending on whether his audience was secular or creationist. However, Snelling has always been open about his creationist views, even when involved with secular research.

In a widely-distributed article, Dr. Alex Ritchie, a palaeontologist at the Australian Museum accused Snelling of being two different people. One was the Dr. Snelling who, in his published scientific papers, accepts the existence of millions of years, while the other Dr. Snelling was a creationist (whom he acknowledges has "impressive ... scientific qualifications") who believes that the world is around 6,000 years old. Ritchie's evidence of Snelling's supposed long-age beliefs are based on references to millions of years in a paper he did on the Koongarra uranium deposits.[1]

However, Snelling had been asked to review the work of others on the Koongarra uranium deposits, and was citing their views. And, as Don Batten pointed out, "...any caveats inserted by Dr Snelling to distance himself from these beliefs would certainly have been deleted by the editors..." [2]

In 1986 Professor Ian Plimer mockingly accused Snelling of claiming to have discovered fossilised gold chains and other items in coal seams, and repeatedly challenged creationists to provide the evidence.[3] However, as anti-creationist Jim Lippard wrote,

Plimer somehow managed to turn a claimed fossilized iron bolt into "fossil gold chains and iron anchors," put them into coal seams, and attribute the whole claim to Andrew Snelling. He then made a challenge to the creationists to come up with evidence to support what is in fact a straw man of his own creation.[3]

Ritchie has also accused Snelling of "deliberately misleading and deceptive conduct" because he is a qualified geologist who holds views that, in Ritchie's view, are incompatible with geology.[4]


  1. Ritchie, Alex, Will the Real Dr Snelling Please Stand Up? The Skeptic, Vol. 11, No. 4, pp 12-15, Summer 1991
  2. Sarfati, Jonathan, More nonsense from Professor Plimer, 6 April 2001.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Lippard, Jim, How Not To Argue With Creationists, Creation/Evolution issue XXIX, vol. 11, no. 2 (Winter 1991-1992), pp. 9-21.
  4. Ritchie, Alex, Flood geology: a house built on sand
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