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Dramatic videos of Gold King Mine spill released by EPA

The Environmental Protection Agency has posted a set of short videos taken as the spill began of mineral-rich waste water from the Gold King mine in Colorado on August 5. I've embedded one of the ten posted below, showing what looks like the full force of the waters surging out of the mine tunnel. Show More Summary

Let’s Call a Denier a Denier

Much of today’s new media is dreadful – this is a truth well acknowledged by most of us in academia. Be it the doofuses who get to pass as “experts”, the prioritization of special-interest and feel-good pieces, the pushing or … Continue reading ?

Mining and ag industries in Arizona file suit over EPA rule on 'waters of the United States'

The Arizona Mining Association passed along this announcement. This is a complex debate with dramatically different interpretations and claims of what the rule means. Farmers are convinced EPA will regulate water in man-made ditchesShow More Summary

A Bird Shangri-La No More: The Moas of New Zealand

Blogging always involves a little bit of free association, where inspiration comes from numerous unrelated events over the course of a few days. I've started my fall semester, and I've met 170 new people over the last week. I've given...Show More Summary

Geology and Geomorphology of the San Pedro River, Southeastern Arizona- special report released

AZGS geologist Dr. Phil Pearthree is testifying this week at a new round of San Pedro River Subflow hearings to decide the extent of the subflow zone, in response to a long-standing judicial determination that river subflow and groundwater are different resources. Show More Summary

Harald Drewes, former USGS geologist

We recently learned that Harald Drewes died on July 21 in Colorado. Harald was a career USGS scientist, well known to Arizonans for his many years of geological mapping in southern Arizona. Friends report that no memorial service is planned. [Photo credit, John M. Ghrist, courtesy of the Colorado Scientific Society.]

Oo'-tin (Bower Cave) in the Sierra Nevada: Caverns, Lost Pictures, Dances, and the Origin Place of Humans (maybe)

The middle parts of the Sierra Nevada are kind of the great unknown of the Sierra Nevada (at least to me, but I suspect many others, too). It's not that the region between the mostly alpine national parks and the highly touristy Mother Lode is a wilderness. Show More Summary

The Hayward fault by the Oakland Zoo

Most people don’t know this, I think, but the Hayward fault runs right through the Oakland Zoo. I won’t take you there this week; instead let’s look at the residential area just south of the zoo. Here’s the topography from Google Maps, tilted 40 degrees from north to bring out the grain of the land. […]

An inconvenient truth - 60 tons of uranium comes down Grand Canyon every year naturally

In the wake of the EPA mine water spill in Colorado a variety of groups are calling for rewriting the nation's mining laws and regulations. Kevin Dahl, Arizona program manager for the National Parks Conservation Association is quoted in today's Tucson newspaper as saying, “Five million people visit the Grand Canyon every year. Show More Summary

Vagabonding on Dangerous Ground: Our Tour of the Greatest National Park I Never Once Set Foot In.

The western slope of the Cascades Range is green. Very green. There are trees, shrubs, mosses, grasses, just about every kind photosynthesizing plant there is. This is due of course to the mountains themselves. They provide a barrier...Show More Summary

Too Much Smoke — And Pelicans!

It's a little hard to tell how smoky it is from this picture, until you realize that Lassen Peak, the central feature of the Lassen Volcanic Center and Lassen Volcanic National Park, should be easily visible just to the left of the distant part of the highway. Show More Summary

An elegant solution to acid mine remediation

You are probably familiar with the recent Gold King Mine waste water spill in Colorado and the resulting chorus of calls for cleaning up abandoned mines across the West. As part of this month’s Arizona Mining Review, our online video...Show More Summary

Geologic sequestration of CO2 may be coming for Four Corners power plant

Our sources say that Arizona Public Service (APS), owner of 3 of the generating units at the Four Corners coal-fired power plant in northwest New Mexico [right, credit SRP], will invest $800 million to $1 billion to capture the carbon...Show More Summary

Freeport to cut US mine staff 10%, production by 25% in response to price drop

Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold, the Phoenix-based company with worldwide operations including 7 copper mines in Arizona, announced plans to cut the number of U.S. mine workers by 10% along with a 25% reduction in copper production, and a big reduction in capital expenditures. Show More Summary

Vagabonding on Dangerous Ground: Seeing Volcanoes from the Inside Out at Siám' Smánit (Stawamus Chief)

It's one thing to talk about a subduction zone from the outside, where one might see an oceanic trench, or a chain of volcanoes. It's quite another to explore the convergent zone from the inside out, by, for instance, standing under the volcano. Show More Summary

EPA: Gold King Mine blowout "inevitable"

EPA posted a new report SUMMARY REPORT: EPA Internal Review of the August 5, 2015 Gold King Mine Blowout (PDF) at The EPA internal investigator team reports that "theShow More Summary

Road Song: Rockin' in the Free World

Neil Young: Rockin' in the Free World (lyrics)Album: Freedom, 1989This is technically a road song because it mentions streets twice and roads once, and because the video that came out with the song also shows a lot of streets. It's a...Show More Summary

Celebration of lives and professional accomplishments of Bill and Jackie Dickinson

The University of Arizona Department of Geosciences invites you to a celebration of the lives and professional accomplishments of Bill and Jackie Dickinson, to be held Friday, October 23 from 3 – 6:30 pm in the Kuiper Space Sciences building on the University of Arizona campus. Show More Summary

Arizona Statewide Landslide Inventory Database (AZSLID)

The following article was published by the Arizona Dept. of Emergency and Military Affairs, under the title " Landslide Database to Inform Mitigation Decision-Making, Improve Whole Community Awareness" by Ethan M. Riley: When a landslide south of Page, Ariz., collapsed a portion of U.S. Show More Summary

Encounter with Sugarloaf Hill

As promised, here’s a look at Sugarloaf (a/k/a 1175) Hill. But first two announcements: The 46L bus line goes from the Coliseum BART station past the zoo to Oakland’s remote Grass Valley neighborhood. It’s the only public transit providing access to the area that includes all of Knowland Park. AC Transit funded a year-long trial […]

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