The best of Geology and Earth Science on the web
Welcome to


Geo 1095: April 25, Day 845: An Incident at Deer Creek Bridge

Outside the Interzone | 25 April, 2015
There are a couple of things of note to see at Deer Creek Bridge. The first is not all that obvious unless you know what to look for and where to look for it. We're looking upstream along the McKenzie River here, and the Deer Creek confluence is on the middle left side of the photo. The annotation below should help clarify why that's important.
Categories: Earth; Geo 1095; Geology; Oregon;

Why Kathmandu was so vulnerable

The magnitude 7.9 earthquake that hit Nepal this morning is shocking news. For some time scientists have realised that the Kathmandu valley is one of the most dangerous places in the world, in terms of earthquake risk. A combination of high seismic activity at the front of the Tibetan plateau, poor building standards, and haphazard urbanisation have come together today with fatal consequences.
Categories: Uncategorized;

Red Conglomerate Hills Near Oudtshoorn, South Africa

Georneys | 25 April, 2015
Red conglomerate hills with a rock arch.
Categories: conglomerate; Cretaceous; rock arches; South Africa;

Geo 1095: April 24, Day 844: Iconic Oregon

Outside the Interzone | 25 April, 2015
This is the view of Ollalie Creek from the top of its bank, at the edge of the campground. When I moved here 35 years ago, this is, I think, what I imagined the entire state looked like. I imagine this is what others expect it to look like, as well. We have plenty of this kind of landscape, but the Willamette Valley is very different. And better than 2/3 of the state on the other side of the Cascades- not too far from here, in a straight line- is semi-arid grassland and sage scrub. Pretty much the antithesis of this scene.
Categories: Earth; Geo 1095; Geology; Oregon;

Geophysical Correlations

JOIDES Resolution Blogs | 25 April, 2015
We are now drilling at deeper than 700 m below the seafloor but in the upper part of the section we have a number of holes that now allow us to put together a relatively complete record of sediment in this area provided the different drills cores can be related to one another.
Categories: None

Magnitude 7.8-7.9 earthquake strikes near Katmandu, Nepal

Geology in Motion | 25 April, 2015
Location of earthquake and initial aftershocks
Categories: None

from: Hester Mallonee

Hi Sent from my iPhone...
Categories: None

Tragedy in the Himalaya – Largest Earthquake for 80 years in Nepal

Here we note some recommend reading and news sources on the event:
Categories: Earthquakes; Geohazards; Nepal;

Nenana Ice Classic 2015

RealClimate | 25 April, 2015
Unsurprisingly to anyone looking at the exceptionally warm winter on the West Coast of North America, the Nenana Ice Classic had another near-record early breakup on Friday, netting some lucky winner(s) around $300,000 in prizes.
Categories: Climate Science; Instrumental Record;

Why Nepal is so vulnerability to devastating earthquakes

The magnitude 7.9 earthquake that hit Nepal this morning is shocking news. For some time scientists have realised that the Kathmandu valley is one of the most dangerous places in the world, in terms of earthquake risk. A combination of high seismic activity at the front of the Tibetan plateau, poor building standards, and haphazard urbanisation have come together today with fatal consequences.
Categories: None


Two months have passed since my report on the few street plants tough enough to survive in Laramie in February.  But now it's spring, and I'm sure that a strong urge to grow is swelling in many seeds hiding in cracks and crannies in concrete and asphalt.  Probably fresh young shoots are already out, determined to enjoy their moment in the sun.
Categories: #urbanwildplants; urban botany;

In Coachella Valley, poor people who are always in drought

Inkstain (John Fleck) | 25 April, 2015
The Desert Sun has been doing a great series on California's drought, but this is surely the most important of the stories. While the rest of California worries about a dwindling supply, some poor residents of the palmy, leafy, lawny Coachella Valley, playground of Southern California wealth, don't have a safe drinking supply at all, drought or not:
Categories: California; cawater; economics; water;

Accumulating a few links on the April 25, 2015 M7.9 Nepal Earthquake

Active Tectonics | 25 April, 2015
An M7.8 earthquake occurred 77km (48mi) NW of Kathmandu, Nepal April 25, 2015. It apparently occurred along the Main Himalayan thrust fault system which accommodates the substantial convergence between India and Eurasia. According to the USGS, the last great earthquake in this region along the Himalayan arc was about 240 km southeast--the 1934 M8 1934 Nepal-Bihar earthquake--and caused major damage to Kathmandu and caused about 10,600 casualties. This 2015 earthquake is likely to have been devastating. See this Jonathan Amos/BBC explainer on Why Nepal is so vulnerable to quakes. And, here is a blog entry from NY Times on Himalayan seismic risk. Here is the anticipation of damage and casualties from USGS Pager. More than 3.6 million people are expected to have felt very strong shaking. The focal mechanism, inverted finite fault, and the aftershocks are consistent with the interpretation of the event along the Himalayan Thrust system.
Categories: Earthquakes; seismology; USGS;

The awkward state of penguin molting

Deep Sea News | 25 April, 2015
This oddly plumaged penguin appeared in my Antarctic & Arctic Data Consortium 2015 calendar (yes, I have a data calendar) and I needed to know...why on earth does this penguin have a fauxhawk? And of course there is no better day to answer this que...
Categories: Biology; awkward; molt; Molting; penguins;

Major Earthquake in Nepal Upgraded to Magnitude 7.9

Geotripper | 25 April, 2015
Source: very strong earthquake has struck in Nepal with a magnitude of 7.9 (initial reports listed 7.5). One would expect that serious damage will result; three earthquakes in the last 110 years have approached this size, and the death toll for all three was in the tens of thousands (1934 M8.1 Bihar, 1905 M7.5 Kangra, and 2005 M7.6 Kashmir earthquakes). Although the data is preliminary, the depth listed at this point is worrisome, only 12 kilometers. Such shallow quakes are the most dangerous kind. A magnitude 6.6 aftershock has been reported.
Categories: Himalaya Mountains; Nepal; Nepal 7.9; Nepal Earthquake 2015;

The M=7.5 earthquake in Nepal this morning

The Landslide Blog | 25 April, 2015
It appears that there was a large, shallow earthquake in Nepal this morning.  The initial data suggests that this was a comparatively shallow event in the Central part of the country.  Current data suggest:
Categories: Earthquake-induced landslide; earthquake; featured; nepal; South Asia;

“I’m stuck in my ways.”

Inkstain (John Fleck) | 24 April, 2015
Gila Gravity Main tunnel, Arizona
Categories: agriculture; Arizona; Colorado River; water;

The long tail of under-representation

downwithtime | 24 April, 2015
I am by no means an expert on the subject of under-representation in the sciences.  There are some excellent academic bloggers who have done some great work in discussing issues around race and gender in academia.  This post is intended to highlight what I've observed and experienced over the past year or so, with a specific observation surrounding the EarthCube Early Career Travel Grant.
Categories: Uncategorized;

A few gems from the latest Cassini image data release

Planetary Society Weblog | 24 April, 2015
I checked out the latest public image release from Cassini and found an awesome panorama across Saturn's rings, as well as some pretty views looking over Titan's north pole....
Categories: None

Measuring the reversals

JOIDES Resolution Blogs | 24 April, 2015
Today we continue to penetrate deep into the section and have reached rocks of around 8 million years age. Critical to determining the age of sedimentation is the magnetic timescale which is worked out by two scientist on the ship , Lisa Tauxe from the Scripps Institute of oceanography in San Diego and Giancarlo Scardia an ex-patriot Italian now working in San Paolo Brazil.
Categories: None

Geo 1095: April 23, Day 843: Ollalie Creek

Outside the Interzone | 24 April, 2015
This is an isolated photo in this day's folder, and at first I wasn't certain what it's a photo of. But in terms of sequence, and comparing it to Dana's photos at the same location, it has to be Ollalie Creek. The Ollalie Campground is just off Route 126, where we pulled off to have a look at this entirely spring-sourced tributary to the McKenzie. The thing that threw me off is that I had forgotten what a large and voluminous stream it was. I remembered it looked awfully energetic, and that I wouldn't want to wade it- that it looked as if, without precautions, it could be quite dangerous. And like (nearly) all the other water in this area, it's only a bit above freezing, which makes it even more treacherous. But when I looked at this shot earlier, my first reaction was "Is that just a narrow spot on the McKenzie I've forgotten about?" Nope. It's a tributary stream.
Categories: Earth; Geo 1095; Geology; Oregon; Picture Me Stunned;

New Horizons One Earth Message

Planetary Society Weblog | 24 April, 2015
The One Earth Message Project is going to send a message to the stars, and we invite members of the Planetary Society to join us in this historic endeavor....
Categories: None

What followed the Giant Impact (read Lord Mayor’s Show)?

Earth-Pages | 24 April, 2015
The dominance of the Lunar Highlands by feldspar-rich anorthosites, which form when feldspars that crystallise from magmas float because of their lower density, gave rise to the idea that the Moon initially formed as a totally molten mass. That this probably resulted because the early Earth collided with a Mars-sized protoplanet stems from the almost identical chemical composition of the lunar and terrestrial mantles, as worked out from the composition of younger basalts derived from both, together with the vast energy needed to support a large molten planetary body condensing from a plasma cloud orbiting the Earth. Such a giant impact is also implicated in the final stages of core formation within the Earth.
Categories: Planetary, extraterrestrial geology, and meteoritics; Earth; Giant impact hypothesis; Isotopes of tungsten; Isotopic signature; Late veneer; Moon;

Sustainability Reporting and Ranking Transparency: CDP

State of the Planet | 24 April, 2015
By Lin Ye   Adam Gordon, an alum of the M.S. in Sustainability Management (MSSM) program, recently returned to campus to talk about his work at CDP as a Supply Chain Account Manager. Adam graduated from the MSSM program in May 2014 and started at C...
Categories: Data; Economics; Energy; General Earth Institute; sustainability; undergraduate major in sustainable development; undergraduate program in sustainable development news; undergraduate special concentration in sustainable development;

LightSail Readiness Tests Prepare Team for Mission Operations

Planetary Society Weblog | 24 April, 2015
The LightSail team continues to prepare for the spacecraft's May test flight with a series of readiness simulations that mimic on-orbit operations....
Categories: None

Latest: Of time and rivers flowing

Latest: Unifying Theory of Geology Class

Latest: How to watch the eclipse on the side of your car

Latest: Scars, acne and others: circles on the ground

- The new timelapse timesink

- Are geologists mostly lefties?