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Find Your Science at GSA
11 March 2010
GSA Release No. 10-09
Contact:
Christa Stratton
Director - GSA Communications & Marketing
+1-303-357-1093
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Earth Science Meeting takes Baltimore by Storm

Geological Society of America hosts joint regional meetings in Baltimore, Maryland, 13-16 March 2010

Boulder, CO, USA –The joint meeting of The Geological Society of America’s Northeastern and Southeastern sections, “Linking North and South: Exploring the Connections between Continent and Sea,” will bring more than 1,500 geoscientists together in Baltimore starting this weekend to discuss new earth-science research and its relationship to society. Topics include health hazards, impacts of climate change, history of the Chesapeake Bay, coastal national parks, new interpretations of Appalachian geology, and energy resources in the eastern United States.

SELECTED SCIENTIFIC PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS
  1. Asbestos: Past, Present, and Future
  2. Geoscience and Public Policy: The Role of Earth Science in Shaping Effective Environmental Policies
  3. Energy Resources in the Eastern United States and Associated Environmental Effects
  4. The Impact of Climate Change on Barrier Island-Backbarrier Systems
  5. Coastal and Nearshore Processes Affecting Our National Parks
  6. Tectonic Significance of Buried Terranes of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains
  7. Geologic and Paleoenvironmental History of the Chesapeake Bay

View the entire technical program at www.geosociety.org/sections/ne/2010mtg/techprog.htm.
Find complete meeting information at www.geosociety.org/sections/ne/2010mtg.

1. Asbestos: Past, Present, and Future (Sessions 4 and 16)

Sunday, 14 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Carroll Room

"Asbestos" is a term most people have heard and consider synonymous with "health hazard." These earth materials are the topic of an all-day symposium and evening panel discussion that will present the basic scientific techniques for identification of this group of minerals, their sources, and the health issues that continue to bedevil us. Researchers tackling the salient features of "asbestos" morphology will document the methods and techniques employed for hazard designation as well as review the long-term global studies on exposure and monitoring.

2. Geoscience and Public Policy: The Role of Earth Science in Shaping Effective Environmental Policies (Special Plenary Session)

Sunday, 14 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Liberty Ballroom, 4:00-5:00 PM

This session will address natural resource development, environmental restoration, and other key issues at the interface between geoscience and public policy. Drawing upon geographic examples from Florida, Maryland, New York, and Vermont, it will include a panel discussion and questions from the audience.

Speakers:

Moderator: Geoffrey Feiss, Provost emeritus, College of William and Mary.

3. Energy Resources in the Eastern United States and Associated Environmental Effects (Session 8)

Sunday, 14 March 2010, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Pratt A/B Room

Papers of note in this session will explore carbon capture and storage in rejuvenating and diversifying the energy portfolio of the southeastern United States, and a Virginia case study of the legislative and regulatory framework for managing offshore energy resources. The session also addresses the development of natural gas and coal resources in the northeastern U.S.

4. The Impact of Climate Change on Barrier Island-Backbarrier Systems (Session 48)

Monday, 15 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Room Liberty A

Geologic data can provide insight into the climate-induced changes that have occurred to coastal environments. Given the density of development that has occurred along highly dynamic barrier shorelines during the past several decades, the continued trends toward increased development, and the potential impacts to sensitive coastal ecosystems, papers in this session aim to determine the impact of climate change on barrier island and backbarrier systems (marsh, lagoon, and bay environments). The session contains papers that will discuss how climate change has altered, if at all, the magnitude and/or frequency of coastal processes and/or how barrier-tidal inlet-backbarrier systems have responded to process changes over a variety of spatial and temporal scales.

Speakers:

5. Coastal and Nearshore Processes Affecting Our National Parks (Session 31)

Monday, 15 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Room Pratt A/B

Our coastal national parks protect important coastal ecosystems from the increasing urbanization of the U.S. Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. These national parks provide unique opportunities to study natural coastal areas and processes. The research presented in this session will improve parks’ abilities to manage and protect their natural resources and also provides a foundation for understanding the more complicated processes of areas with human modifications. Session participants will share results that are improving our understanding and management of coastal national parks from Maine to Texas.

Speakers:

6. Tectonic Significance of Buried Terranes of the Atlantic and Gulf Coastal Plains (Session 29)

Monday, 15 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Room Liberty B

Speakers who use both direct sampling from scientific, mineral, and energy exploration drilling and remote sensing based on geophysical methods will present their interpretations of the geology of vast areas of the Appalachian Mountains now buried under hundreds to thousands of feet of younger sediments in this special session (T3). Accurately characterizing these buried rocks poses one of the most daunting challenges in understanding the evolution of the mountain belt and its mineral and energy resources. Presentations will address the location of geological boundaries, role of supercontinent cycles, rift basins that preceded opening of the Atlantic Ocean, and earthquake hazards.

7. Geologic and Paleoenvironmental History of the Chesapeake Bay (Session 77)

Tuesday, 16 March, Sheraton Baltimore City Center: Carroll Room

The Chesapeake Bay provides an ideal system for exploring how coastal ecosystems respond to threats, including human activity, climate change, and sea-level rise. This session will focus on the sedimentary record of the bay, from fossils to biomarkers, and how we can use it to reconstruct past drought and climate change events. Topics to be discussed include the effects of European settlers on the bay environment, how the bay has responded to “natural” versus anthropogenic disturbances, the extent to which the fossil record can provide a baseline for ecological reconstruction, and how the sedimentary record can inform current management practices.

MEDIA REGISTRATION

Eligibility for media registration is as follows:

Present media credentials to Beth Engle or William Cox onsite at the GSA Registration desk to obtain badge for media access.

Complementary meeting registration covers attendance at all technical sessions and access to the exhibit hall. Journalists and PIOs must pay for any short courses, field trips, or ticketed events in which they wish to participate.

Representatives of the business side of news media, publishing houses, and for-profit corporations must register at the main registration desk and pay the appropriate fees.

For additional information and assistance, contact Christa Stratton, GSA Director of Communications, at the address above.

www.geosociety.org

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