Quirks & Quarks

Why doesn't life continue to spontaneously occur around hydrothermal vents in the ocean?

Life on Earth began as a series of unique processes that resulted in a constant evolution that continues today
Life on Earth likely began at hydro thermal vents like the Eifuku volcano's Champagne Vent near Japan (NOAA)

Dr. Ali Aksu from the Earth Sciences Department at Memorial University of Newfoundland explains that life on Earth began as progressively complex organic molecules arose from non-living mater. It is quite likely that this took place around hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor about 4 billion years ago. Life did not begin in a single event, it began as a series of processes that started a constant evolution that continues today. Those processes were unique to conditions on the planet at that time. For that reason, it is not possible for life to re-evolve even though we still have active hydrothermal events in the oceans.