Another Earthquake Hits China

30 08 2008

Less than four months since a 7.9 earthquake in northern Sichuan killed nearly 70,000 people and left five million homeless, another earthquake hit the area on August 30, this time in the southwestern part of the province.

Saturday’s quake, close to the Yunnan border, measured 6.1 in magnitude (according tomost news report; the USGS reports it as 5.7) and killed 24 people. Relief efforts have been hampered by heavy rains and the region’s rugged terrain

According to New Scientist Environment, the area had been considered at low risk for quakes, and in the wake of the May earthquake geologists have realized their hazard maps must have serious shortcomings. A coalition of geologists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Chengdu Institute of Geology and Mineral Resources, Sichuan, now say that similar regions may also be in danger and that seismic hazard maps should be redrawn.

In a sad irony, the article, dated August 30, also states that “For Sichuan province, they calculate that the next big earthquake is not due for at least 2000 years..”



GSA Annual Meeting Honors International Year of Planet Earth

27 08 2008

This year the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America (GSA) will hold a joint meeting with the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA), American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), and the Gulf Coast Association of Geological Societies with the Gulf Coast Section of SEPM (GCAGS), and the event will be hosted by the Houston Geological Society (HGS).

The conference will take place October 5-9 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas.

The extended program linking Energy, Water Resources, Education, and Earth Systems, will encompass the 10 broad, societally relevant and multidisciplinary themes declared by The International Year of Planet Earth (health, climate, groundwater, ocean, soils, deep Earth, megacities, hazards, resources, and life).

There is still time to register for the event. For more information see the Joint Annual Meeting website.

Our First UnEarthedTees Give-Away

22 08 2008

Attention Rock Hounds and Geologists!  UnEarthedTees are having our first t-shirt give-away. The object: a swell retro-inspired Rock Hound Cafe (“And bring your apatite!”) white t-shirt, size large unisex:

Rock Hound T-Shirt

Rock Hound T-Shirt

Of course if you can’t wait for the give-away results, you can always buy one here. Or any of these other Rock Hound Cafe shirt styles (including sweats and women’s-only style) here.

So how to participate? Just submit a valid comment here with any of the following by September 26, 2008:

1. An original t-shirt design suggestion for us.

2. Share a cool geology-mineral-gem photo here of your own or that you have rights to. (Please link the image location.)

3. Share a comment, kudos or what you might like to see more of in our blog, or a friendly note about our shirt shop, UnEarthedTees.

** Be sure to include your email address which will be hidden to public view, so I can contact you if you are the winner.

Comments are moderated and are passed through an high-energy anti-spam power-ray so if you are not one of our usual nice readers or visitors, don’t even bother if you are thinking of spamming.

As for our usual nice readers and visitors, hope to hear from you! Let the games begin!

Geo-Pict of the Day

13 08 2008

Today’s Geo-Pict is from NASA’s Earth as Art series, a striking satellite image of Lake Disappointment in Western Australia.

Lake Disappointment is an ephemeral salt lake that covers approximately 370,650 acres on the edge of Western Australia’s Gibson Desert. Explorer Frank Hann supposedly named the lake in 1897 after following a number of creeks that he thought would lead to a large lake. They did, but the lake’s extremely salty water was not drinkable.

Lake Disappointment, Australia

Lake Disappointment, Australia