AZGS Web Posts

Another quake in northern Arizona

Arizona Geology Blog - Fri, 2014-06-27 08:09
There was a second earthquake on Wednesday in northern Arizona.  A magnitude 2.4 event occurred at 2:40 pm local time about 20-30 miles west of Fredonia, where a magnitude 2.2 quake had hit at 2:05 a.m. that morning.   [Right, orange star marks the epicenter.  Red lines are active faults. Credit Univ. of Utah Seismograph Stations and USGS]

The bottom map shows location of the earlier event.
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

M=2.2 earthquake near Fredonia

Arizona Geology Blog - Wed, 2014-06-25 19:30
A magnitude 2.2 earthquake hit about 4 miles south of Fredonia, Arizona at 2:05 a.m. this morning.

[Right, the orange star marks the epicenter.  The red lines are active fault traces. Credit, USGS]
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

New State Cartographer named for Arizona

Arizona Geology Blog - Fri, 2014-06-20 13:40
Curtis Pulford, the Wisconsin Geographic Information Officer, has been appointed Arizona State Cartographer, which is housed in the State Land Dept.He will be filling the position recently vacated by Gene Trobia and will begin on Monday July 7th. [Photo source, Linkedin]
  According to Vanessa Hickman, Executive Director of the State Land Dept. "Curtis has lived and worked in Wisconsin for many years as that state’s Geographic Information Officer (GIO), where he was responsible for the statewide coordination of all GIS partnerships and resources.  One of his key recent accomplishments was building and implementing a State Spatial Data Repository.  This experience will serve him and the Land Department well as we continue our efforts as a member of the Governor’s Natural Resource Review Council (NRRC), the NRRC GIS subcommittee and the NRRC Clearinghouse subcommittee.  Within this GIO role, Curtis has routinely been called upon to lead coordination meetings with public stakeholders, legislators and business executives in order to design and optimize GIS solutions at the statewide level.     
Curtis also worked for nearly a decade for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation as GIS manager.  Before that he lived and worked in Arizona for Pima County as a GIS professional, so he is familiar with many of the unique challenges and opportunities we manage."
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Responses posted to Rosemont Copper objections

Arizona Geology Blog - Tue, 2014-06-17 14:52
Coronado National Forest officials have posted responses to the objections raised about the proposed Rosemont Copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains.   Responses are targeted to each person or organization that made objections.

Regional Forester Calvin Joyner said they received 114 objections by the deadline, of which 101 were deemed eligible.   In his response letters to the objectors, Joyner stated that he found the "project is in compliance with these [environmental] laws, regulations, policies, and Forest Plan.  However, by copy of this letter, I am instructing the Forest Supervisor to complete consultation with the USFWS [US Fish & Wildlife Service] and address the clarifications and corrections I identified above prior to signing the Final ROD [Record of Decision]."

The latter condition appears to refer to further consultation with USFWS over the siting of an ocelot in the region, something which had been anticipated in the EIS.   Otherwise, my quick reading of the documents found what appear to be only relatively minor corrections, clarifications, or revisions.
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

Wildfires & monsoon mean floods and debris flows - hazard assessed at Sedona's Slide fire

Arizona Geology Blog - Sun, 2014-06-15 09:46

Wildfires burn away hillside vegetation and lead to flooding and debris flows (commonly called mudslides). With the official start of the monsoon season today, which is predicted to be wetter than normal, areas recently burned such as the area between Sedona and Flagstaff in the Slide fire, are at higher risk.  

Local news reports on the results of the Burn Area Emergency Response (BAER) team evaluation indicate an 8-times greater risk of flooding as a result of the Slide fire.   AZGS geologist Dr. Ann Youberg is our debris flow specialist and participates in BAER team assessments.

Similar hazards and risks exist across the Western U.S.   A new online hazard assessment system was unveiled by the USGS last week that includes the Slide fire.   It shows substantial areas with 60-80% probability of debris flows based on 10-year storms.  A few small areas reach the 80-100% probability range.



[From the USGS explanation: The interactive map above displays estimates of the probability of debris flow (in %), potential volume of debris flow (in m3), and combined relative debris flow hazard. These predictions are made at the scale of the drainage basin, and at the scale of the individual stream segment. Estimates of probability, volume, and combined hazard are based upon a design storm with 10-year recurrence interval (i.e., a 1 in 10 chance of a storm of that magnitude occurring in any given year). Predictions may be viewed interactively by clicking on the button at the top right corner of the map displayed above. Visit the Scientific Background page for more information on how the predictions are calculated. For more information about what to do in case you live in an area where debris flows are possible, please visit If you live in a recently burned area, and there is a rainstorm…]

AGU blogger Alexandra Branscombe took a look at predicting post-fire mudslides in the Western U.S.  at http://blogs.agu.org/geospace/2014/06/12/burns-floods-predicting-post-fire-mudslides-west/


Categories: AZGS Web Posts

Google Earth view of Arizona earth fissures

Arizona Geology Blog - Sun, 2014-06-15 08:53
AZGS geologist Joe Cook, who manages our Earth Fissures mapping program, has created a Google Earth view of all the Earth Fissures identified in Arizona thus far. The Google Earth app complements the online interactive Earth Fissure Viewer which is widely used by home buyers, home builders, real estate professionals, and local planners.  

The Google Earth view is available at http://www.azgs.az.gov/Earth%20Fissures/AZGS-DI-39-060414.kmz



Earth fissures typically form due to basin subsidence in areas of rapid groundwater withdrawal.  Fissures have formed in Maricopa, Pinal, Pima, and Santa Cruz counties in Arizona, but also occur in California, Texas, Mexico, and other areas with similar conditions.
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

Earth fissures now available on Google Earth

Arizona Geology Blog - Sun, 2014-06-08 10:16
You can now view Arizona's earth fissures on Google Earth  thanks to AZGS project manager Joe Cook.     You can access the viewer through  our Maps and Database Services page at  http://azgs.az.gov/map_services.shtml

[Right, distribution of mapped earth fissures in Cochise, Maricopa and Pinal Counties as shown in the Google Earth environment]

The Earth Fissure Viewer at http://www.azgs.az.gov/efv.shtml remains as the official source of Earth Fissure maps and information for those involved in the real estate - development businesses.
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

7-ounce gold nugget stolen from UA Mineral Museum

Arizona Geology Blog - Thu, 2014-06-05 13:35
The University of Arizona Police Department reported yesterday that, "On Saturday May 30, 2014 at approximately 2:30 p.m., a gold nugget from the Hubert de Monmonier Collection was stolen from the Flandrau Planetarium at the University of Arizona. The gold nugget measures 3.11 in. x 1.26 in. by .9 in. (7.9 cm x 3.2 cm x 2.3 cm) and weighs .48 pounds (7 ounces). The nugget is valued at $30,000 and is well-known to the mineral community and museum enthusiasts."    [Photo credit, UA Police Dept.]

Categories: AZGS Web Posts

UA short course on ore deposits mapping

Arizona Geology Blog - Wed, 2014-06-04 20:30
We received this announcement today and  are sharing it in full:
University of Arizona Lowell Program in Economic Geology
Short Course on Ore Deposits Mapping
August 28 - September 6, 2014
Yerington porphyry and skarn mapping exercises, and field trip of ore-forming systems in the Great Basin

Dear Colleagues:
We are opening registration for the tenth offering of our Short Course on Ore Deposits Mapping, which
will take place Thursday, August 28 through Saturday, September 6, 2014. A tentative outline is
given below.

Course Details:
As has been tradition in the U of A’s advanced ore deposits curriculum over the last 15 years, Mark
Barton and Eric Seedorff will again be leading the extended field trip and mapping course through the
Great Basin. It will be an opportunity to see ore deposits of various types and ages, set in the context of
the structural and magmatic evolution of the region. The trip is designed for graduate students taking an
advanced ore deposits class, but we will make available approximately 25 seats for members of industry.
The trip will include a focused multi-day introduction to the “Anaconda-style” of detailed mapping in
the Yerington district, Nevada. The district contains porphyry copper and skarn mineralization, but the
mapping method is adaptable to any type of deposit. As part of this, we highlight how mapping can be
used to understand zoning, the time-space evolution of mineralizing systems, and the relationships to the
fundamental phase equilibria of hydrothermal alteration. In addition to numerous other geologic stops,
the trip also anticipates to include overviews and/or tours of the following districts and deposits:
  • Tonopah, Nevada [low-sulfidation epithermal Ag-Au],
  • Goldfield, Nevada [high-sulfidation epithermal Au],
  • Birch Creek, California [F-Be-W-(Zn) greisen/skarn],
  • Humboldt, Nevada [IOCG occurrences],
  • Eureka district, Nevada [partially superimposed systems, with a Carlin-type Au mine at Archimedes, a porphyry Mo-Cu to replacement Zn-Pb-Ag deposit at Ruby Hill, and the top of a F-W-Zn-Be-(Mo-Sn) system at McCullough Butte]
  • Robinson district, Nevada [porphyry Cu-(Mo-Au) and related skarn and distal Au-Ag deposits].

The trip is 10 days round trip from Las Vegas, covering about 25
participants should plan to arrive in Las Vegas no later than Wednesday evening August 27, as the trip
leaves early on Thursday morning August 28. Industry participants should also plan to depart from Las
Vegas no earlier than late Thursday evening September 06, 2014.
00 miles in 4WD vehicles. Industry

The early registration cost of the trip for non-university participants is US$3,200, which includes ground
transportation, all lunches in the field, double-occupancy accommodations in motels each night during
the trip, and course materials. Breakfasts and most dinners are the responsibility of participants. Industry
participants also will need to provide their own transportation to and from Las Vegas as well as their
accommodations the night preceding and following the trip. Please respond via e-mail to
brambila@email.arizona.edu for reservations. Register soon! This sort course sells out quickly.

Please find enclosed to this letter all registration materials (registration and foreign visitor statement
forms in English and in Spanish as well as the documentation required for foreign nationals (non US
citizens) so that you can forward this information to your co-workers and friends.

Visit our webpage: http://lpeg.geo.arizona.edu/ to learn more about our program and short courses
We also take the opportunity to inform you that our Short Course on Porphyry Deposits will take place
again December 9-18, 2014. This 9-day short course has a focus on exploration geology that includes
3½ days of lectures and 2 days of labs in Tucson, and 3½ days of field trips to representative ore
systems in Arizona. As in years past, we will send the registration materials for this course in late July.
Categories: AZGS Web Posts

Exemption period for geologist licensure in Louisiana

Arizona Geology Blog - Wed, 2014-06-04 07:39


We received this news from the Louisiana Board of Professional Geoscientists that describes the possibility for registered geologists in Arizona and other states to be eligible for licensure in Louisiana without having to take the exam there.  [Right, geologic map of Louisiana. Credit, EPA] Louisiana Representative Hunter Greene’s House Bill 167 on professionallicensure for geologists has become law. Act 228, effective May 28, 2014, amends and reenacts the Louisiana Revised Statute 37:711.14(B) and 711.15(A)(4)(b) relative to the Louisiana Professional Geoscience Practice Act as follows:
§711.14(B) Examinations – The Board may adopt or recognize, in whole or in part, an examination prepared, administered, or graded by another organization, on a regional or national basis, that the board determines appropriate to measure the qualifications of an applicant for a license under this Chapter; however the board retains the authority to determine a passing grade for a license in this state on an adopted or recognized examination prepared, administered, or graded by another organization, on a regional or national basis. §711.15(A)(4)(b) License eligibility – An applicant who applies for licensure under this Chapter prior to January 1, 2015, shall be exempt from taking the examination described in Subparagraph (a) of this Paragraph if the applicant satisfies all the other requirements of this Subsection.

For more information, contact: Georgeann McNicholasExecutive Secretary
Louisiana Board of Professional Geoscientists9643 Brookline Ave., Ste. 101
Baton Rouge, LA  70806ofc. 225-389-6116fax  225-448-2964cell 225-505-3766apply@lbopg.org
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