) of the White Mountains of Eastern California, were dated in 1957 by counting tree rings at 4,723 years old.
This would mean they pre-dated the Flood which occurred around 4,350 years ago, taking a straightforward approach to Biblical chronology.
Irish scientists are tracing Ireland's environmental history using dendrochronology, or tree-ring dating.
In 1859, the German-American Jacob Kuechler (1823–1893) used crossdating to examine oaks (Quercus stellata) in order to study the record of climate in western Texas.
During the first half of the 20th century, the astronomer A. Douglass founded the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research at the University of Arizona.
The technique has the ability to show what were the most catastrophic environmental events to affect Ireland over the last 7,000 years.
"We can see the first glimpse of an environmental history which is independent of human history and which, most of the time, is better dated than human history," stated Prof Michael Baillie of the School of Archaeology and Palaeoecology, Queen's University Belfast.