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Miscellaneous

ASCE Geo-Institute Reports on Trends Affecting the Geo-Community

In July of 2007 a virtual who’s who of the Geo-community gathered at the headquarters of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) for a workshop to discuss the Trends Affecting the Geo-community. Yesterday the ASCE released a report on the workshop titled: Trends Affecting the Geo-Community: What Does the Future Hold, edited by Peter Smeallie. More details after the break.

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Geologic Hazards

New White Paper on Earth Fissures

The Arizona Land Subsidence Group (ALSG) has just released a white paper entitled "Land Subsidence and Earth Fissures in Arizona". More details after the break. (Photo courtesy of NCS Consultants, LLC)

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Miscellaneous

Nevada’s Yucca Mountain Case Versus DOE Thrown Out

The State of Nevada lost a major battle in their attempt to block the US Department of Energy’s attempt at licensing the Yucca Mountain nuclear waste repository. The panel of judges in the case threw it out after a week of oral arguments by the State. According to the Las Vegas Review Journal, the Judge’s  ruling stated "Nevada’s legal position is incorrect."

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Geologic Hazards

Massive Landslide in B.C. Triggers Tsunami in Lake

A massive landslide triggered a 2 meter plus high wave at a lake in British Columbia. The resulting wave wiped out massive full grown cedar trees all along the lake and could have an environmental impact by damming up a stream that flows from the lake and also impacting fish populations. Apparently salmon migrate through this lake also. Video coverage after the break. (Photo by CBCNews.ca)

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Failures

$180 Million Settlement in Reservoir Failure

On December 14, 2005, the upper reservoir of the Taum Sauk pumped storage plant, a hydroelectric power plant in the Missouri Ozarks, suffered a catastrophic failure. The resulting flood severely damaged the Jonhson’s Shut-Ins State Park and swept away the park superintendent and his family. Fortunately all of them survived. (Photos by Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and USGS)

Last week, the Missouri Attorney General’s office announced a settlement of $180 million between the facility’s owner, Ameren Corp. The failure reportedly was a result of negligence on the part of the company. More details after the break.

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Geologic Hazards

Landslide at Traunsee Lake in Austria

The people living on the eastern bank of the Traunsee (map on following page) in Austria are able to observe geology in motion these days. About one million tons of soil and rock are moving in a slow landslide toward the lake, throwing over trees (picture at left) and threatening to take parts of a village with them. More… 

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Geologic Hazards

Kilauea Volcano: Examining Hazards from Latest Redirected Flow Event

In July of 2007, The Big Island’s Kilauea began eruting approximately 500,000 cubic meters of lava a day in a direction that has not previously seen lava flows. Most importantly, the northeasterly direction of flow takes it towards Pahoa Village, 11 miles from the erupting fissure but still possibly at risk. Read on for more. (USGS Photo)

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Geoarchaeology

Drilling to Save Aswan Obelisk Quarry

The Ancient Egyptians are still marveled at today for some of their enduring hard-rock creations. Of course everyone thinks of the Sphinx and the Great Pyramids, but perhaps just as impressive if not more impressive were the gigantic obelisks that were quarried and somehow transported into place. There is work underway to preserve a rare archaeological site, a granite quarry with a large unfinished obelisk near Aswan.

Archaeological evidence combined with some shallow seismic refraction surveys and bore holes confirm the finding of a canal believed to have been used to transport these obelisks to the Nile River during flooding. However, dewatering will be needed to excavate these canals to verify these claims. Another problem is the salt deposits that are slowly destroying the quarry. National Driller Magazine is the location of this interesting article. Link after the break.  (Photo by Son of Groucho)

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