GSW: Rudnick on Earth’s continents

The 1526th meeting of the Geological Society of Washington will be on
Friday, January 26, 2018
featuring :

GSW’s 125th birthday party and the Quasquicentennial Lecture:

Roberta Rudnick
University of California – Santa Barbara

“Earth’s Unique Continents”

Tickets are $90 apiece:

All attendees (including those only showing up at 8pm for the talk) need to:
1) register at the site linked to above, and
2) dress according to the formal dress code of the Cosmos Club


AEG-DMV Spring Environmental and Engineering Geology Symposium

The Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists (AEG) D.C.-Maryland-Virginia (DMV) Chapter and the Radford University AEG student chapter are pleased to announce the Fourth Annual Spring Environmental and Engineering Geology Symposium. The spring symposium was established to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, allow students to meet potential employers, and further the fellowship that exists between geoscientists.

AEG-DMV Spring Environmental and Engineering Geology Symposium

March 23 – 24, 2018

Radford, VA

Half-day field trip (to include unmanned systems) on Friday, followed by poster session and oral presentations on Saturday. Additional details to be announced.

Call for Abstracts:

We are seeking abstracts for speakers and posters from college students, geology professionals, professors/instructors, and State regulators. Topics should be focused on the broad subjects of environmental geology and engineering geology.

Abstracts should be submitted by February 16, 2018, and include:

  • The title of the presentation or poster
  • The author(s) names, affiliation(s), and contact information
  • A brief abstract (250 words or less) of the presentation or poster

Please submit abstracts for speakers and posters to Cheryl Gannon ( – a formal paper is not required.

Abstract submissions will be reviewed by the co-conveners of the symposium. If your submission is accepted, you will be notified via e-mail at least three weeks prior to the event. Speakers will be asked to deliver a PowerPoint presentation (not to exceed 18 minutes), and poster authors will be asked to support the poster session.

AEG: Eisner on Effective Source Water Protection

Association of Environmental & Engineering Geologists

D.C. – Maryland – Virginia Chapter (

Thursday, January 18, 2018, from 5:30 PM to 7:45 PM at Brewer’s Alley in Frederick, MD

AEG Members $40, Non-members $45 (includes dinner; student and retiree discounts available). Please register by Monday, January 15, via online payment (

Mark Eisner, President

Advanced Land and Water, Inc.

Challenges in Implementing Effective Source Water Protection – How One Groundwater-Reliant Municipality Balances Economic & Public Health Interests – A Case History from the Delmarva Peninsula

Salisbury, Maryland is a fast-growing municipality situated on and withdrawing groundwater from the extraordinarily productive and vulnerable Salisbury Paleochannel aquifer. The susceptibility to groundwater contamination borne of incompatible land uses also has been a focus of evaluation by Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) and the Maryland Geological Survey and resulted in land use protection ordinance, by both the City of Salisbury and by Wicomico County. Advanced Land and Water, Inc. (ALWI) updated the 2003 Source Water Assessment and worked with the City to develop a customized set of recommendations, centered on proscriptive land use restrictions, but also entailing other measures to achieve ongoing source water protection. We came to develop comprehensive recommendations for a singular multi-jurisdictional ordinance reflective of gradations in both distance (source-to-well) and specific nature of the contamination hazard.

Not long after the MDE-funded source water protection plan update concluded, a new wave of development pressure again brought the local press to focus on the Paleochannel and its protection from contamination arising from incompatible land uses. We continue to recommend ordinance consolidation and even more importantly, that their proscriptive measures be applied and enforced. The presentation will present and discuss our ordinance recommendations in detail, in the context of recent proposed development activity.

Please refer to our meeting announcement for full details (

January 17, 2018 Paleontological Society of Washington meting announcement

The Paleontological Society of Washington

7:00 pm, Wednesday, January 17

National Museum of Natural History, Constitution Ave. entrance

Dawn and Early Morning of the Reptiles: New Discoveries, New Mysteries.

Adam Pritchard

Peter Buck Postdoctoral Fellow, National Museum of Natural History

Smithsonian Institution

The three great lineages of reptiles appeared in the Permian and Triassic Periods, over 200 million years ago. The earliest stages of the evolution of archosaurs (dinosaurs, crocodylians), lepidosaurs (lizards, snakes), and turtles remain shrouded in mystery. New research, combining traditional paleontology and computer imaging, reveal an amazing diversity of small-bodied Triassic reptiles, including species with beaked, bird-like skulls; over-developed jaw muscles for powerful bites; and giant claws for digging. However, new studies of family relationships among the earliest reptiles suggest that long gaps remain in the fossil record and that much of reptilian history remains locked in the Earth.

Non-Smithsonian visitors will be escorted from the Constitution Ave. entrance of the NMNH to the Q?rius auditorium at 6:50 and 6:55 p.m. Society members will host the speaker for dinner at the Elephant & Castle (1201 Pennsylvania Ave.) prior to the meeting. Members may meet at the restaurant or inside the Constitution Ave. entrance of the NMNH at 5:00 and walk to the restaurant as a group. Parking is available in the west side parking lot of the NMNH.

Drs. Peter and Rosemary Grant – 40 years of Evolution of Darwin’s Finches

Tuesday, January 16, 2018 – 6:30pm to 7:45pm

Charles Darwin said evolution was too slow to be observed, but modern studies have corrected this assertion. The Grants will discuss their decades of work studying Darwin’s finches on the Galápagos Island of Daphne Major, as chronicled in the Pulitzer Prize-winning book The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution in Our Time. Their research showed that Darwin’s finches evolve repeatedly when the environment changes. They have even observed the initial stages of new species formation!

Drs. Peter and Rosemary Grant, Professors emeriti, Princeton University

The Capital Science Evenings are made possible with support from Margaret & Will Hearst and Whole Earth Films.

PGS: Sumy on induced earthquakes

Please join us for the December 14, 2017 meeting of the Potomac Geophysical Society at 7:00 p.m. at DoubleTree by Hilton McLean Tysons, 1960 Chain Bridge Road, 22102.  This location is within one-half mile of the Tysons Corner Metro station, near I-495, and has free parking available.  Our private meeting room is located in the back of the Orchard Cafe restaurant on the second floor of the hotel. The optional dinner cost will be discounted to $30 for members in good standing (have paid dues) and students, and $40 for non-members, and is inclusive of iced tea, coffee, tax and gratuity. Members and guests may attend the presentation after dinner for no charge; we estimate that the presentation will begin at 8:15 p.m.  For attendees who arrive early, the social will be held in O’Malley’s Pub on the first floor of the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel.  Drinks may also be purchased in the private meeting room on a cash basis.

Social: 6:00-7:00 p.m. O’Malley’s Pub, first floor Crowne Plaza

Dinner: 7:00-8:15 p.m. Orchard Cafe, second floor Crowne Plaza

Meeting & Presentation: 8:15-9:30 p.m. Peachtree Room in the Orchard Cafe, second floor DoubleTree by Hilton

This Month’s Speaker:

Danielle Sumy, PhD

Induced Earthquakes: Past Lessons and Future Research Directions

Hydraulic fracturing, wastewater injection, reservoir impoundment, and geothermal activity, to name a few, are all known causes of induced earthquakes around the world. Small to moderate events in Ohio, Colorado, Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma have shed light on the induced earthquake issue in the central and eastern United States over the past decade. These earthquakes have been particularly newsworthy and well investigated, and have created debate amongst communities on how to best regulate the causes and mitigate the risk of earthquake activity. In this talk, I will provide a general overview on the history and mechanisms that induce earthquake activity, discuss my own research on the 2011 Prague, Oklahoma events and the research of others, and look forward to the future in the context of how these recent discoveries shape the dialogue between government regulators, community leaders, and the public.

Biography: Dr. Danielle Sumy earned her PhD from the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University in 2011 in marine geology and geophysics, where she specifically focused on the hydraulic mechanisms of earthquake activity at mid-ocean ridge hydrothermal systems. She brought that expertise to the subject of induced seismicity during her postdoctoral fellowships at the USGS in Pasadena, CA and at the University of Southern California. In 2014, she joined the IRIS Consortium, a National Science Foundation large facility that focuses on the operations and management of regional and global seismic networks and the storage of data from these networks, as well as education and outreach efforts to students, professionals, and the public

GSW 1524: Bentley on visualization in geology


Meeting Number 1524

John Wesley Powell Auditorium, Cosmos Club, 2170 Florida Ave NW Wednesday, December 6, 2017; Refreshments 7:30 pm; Meeting 8:00 pm




Callan Bentley, Northern Virginia Community College – Visualization in Geology: a brief history, best practices, & dispatches from the future.



Announcing the Slate of Officers for 2018; to be voted on at the Annual Meeting on December 6, 2017.

President:                     Karen Prestegaard (University of Maryland)

1st Vice President:       Michael Purucker (NASA)

2nd Vice President:     Ester Sztein (The National Academies)

Treasurer:                     Carl-Henry Geschwind (Independent Scholar)

Meeting Secretary:      Victor Zabielski (Northern Virginia Community College)

Council Secretary:        Pat Carr (National Geospatial Intelligence Agency)

Council Members (2018-2019):  Laura Helmuth (The Washington Post)

Libby Stern (federal government)

Mark McBride (Nuclear Regulatory Commission-retired)

Past-President:         Callan Bentley (Northern Virginia Community College)

Continuing Councilors:     Larry Meinert (USGS)

Michael Toomey (USGS)

Jessica Rodysill (USGS)


If you have not done so already, renew your 2018 GSW membership based on the e-mail reminders you have received.  We will need to print and mail paper notices by the end of December to those who have not renewed.


Future Meetings  2018: Jan 3; Feb 7; March 14; April 4, 18; May 2; Sept 12; Oct 3, 24; Nov 14; Dec 5 (Presidential address & annual meeting).

Know someone who would enjoy GSW? Consider inviting a colleague or friend to the meeting.