Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center
May 24, 2016
The Point Sal-Point Piedras Blancas correlation and the problem of slip on the San Gregorio-Hosgri fault, central California Coast Ranges
By Joe Colgan (GECSC) and Richard Stanley. Published in Geosphere.
To better understand right lateral slip on the San Gregorio-Hosgri fault, this study collected stratigraphic and detrital zircon data from Miocene strata at Point Sal and Point Piedras Blancas along the central California coast. The goal was to determine if these sections contained unique characteristics that could establish how far apart they were in the early Miocene, and thus how much of their current separation could be attributed to fault slip. No unique characteristics in the stratigraphy and provenance of the sampled sections were found, but the data did establish the maximum depositional age of the previously undated Point Piedras Blancas section, and demonstrated the utility of trace-element data for discriminating between zircons of oceanic crust and arc affinity.
May 17, 2016
Geologic map of the Rio Rico and Nogales 7.5' quadrangles, Santa Cruz County, Arizona
By Ric Page (GECSC), Chris Menges, Floyd Gray, Margaret Berry (GECSC), Mark Bultman, Mike Cosca, and Paco VanSistine (GECSC). USGS Scientific Investigations Map 3354.
This 1:24,000-scale geologic map covers quadrangles located in the Basin and Range Province of southern-most Arizona and includes the binational urban area of Nogales Arizona (U.S.) and Sonora (Mexico). The mapping was undertaken to define the geologic framework for the Nogales area and the upper Santa Cruz basin to support ongoing multidisciplinary projects as well as to better assess the area's groundwater resource potential. Along with the map, pamphlet and combined 40Ar/39Ar data, downloadable GIS files are included with this publication.
May 12, 2016
The road to Yucca Mountain—evolution of nuclear waste disposal in the United States
By John Stuckless (GECSC) and Robert Levitch. Published in Environmental & Engineering Geoscience.
This report, by GECSC Scientist Emeritus John Stuckless and Robert Levitch (Dept. of Energy, retired), summarizes the process of selecting a site and method for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive waste. After more than 30 years of debate, the process lead to the selection of Yucca Mountain, Nevada and a deep underground repository. Yucca Mountain and the surrounding area were then studied for more than 30 years as described in more than 100 detailed study plans that covered a broad spectrum of earth-science. The work, which cost more than 10 billion dollars and required hundreds of man-years, culminated in a license application submitted to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 2008.
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