Why carbon dating works
Many people have been led to believe that radiometric dating methods have proved the earth to be billions of years old.This has caused many in the church to reevaluate the biblical creation account, specifically the meaning of the word “day” in Genesis 1.This means there's been a steady increase in radiocarbon production (which would increase the ratio). God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him.And finally, this dating scheme is controversial because the dates derived are often wildly inconsistent. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible.So, if we find the remains of a dead creature whose C-12 to C-14 ratio is half of what it's supposed to be (that is, one C-14 atom for every two trillion C-12 atoms instead of one in every trillion) we can assume the creature has been dead for about 5,730 years (since half of the radiocarbon is missing, it takes about 5,730 years for half of it to decay back into nitrogen).If the ratio is a quarter of what it should be (one in every four trillion) we can assume the creature has been dead for 11,460 year (two half-lives).
The period of time that it takes for half of a sample to decay is called a "half-life." Radiocarbon oxidizes (that is, it combines with oxygen) and enters the biosphere through natural processes like breathing and eating.
Specimens which lived and died during a period of intense volcanism would appear older than they really are if they were dated using this technique.
The ratio can further be affected by C-14 production rates in the atmosphere, which in turn is affected by the amount of cosmic rays penetrating the earth's atmosphere.
However, there is strong evidence which suggests that radioactive decay may have been greatly accelerated in the unobservable past.
We must also assume that the ratio of C-12 to C-14 in the atmosphere has remained constant throughout the unobservable past (so we can know what the ratio was at the time of the specimen's death).