Middlebury

March 23, 2001

Geology department to sponsor free
talks on radioactive elements in Champlain Valley groundwater and
tectonic evolution of Russia’s Kamchatka
Peninsula

MIDDLEBURY, Vt.— The Middlebury
College geology department will sponsor two free talks in
April.

The first, given by Jon Kim of the
Vermont Geological Survey, is titled the "Geologic Context of
Naturally-Occurring Radionuclide Problems in Northwestern Vermont."
It will take place Thursday, April 5.

According to Kim, recent
documentation of radioactive elements in groundwater in the Champlain
Valley of northwestern Vermont has spurred significant interest in
the relationships between bedrock geology and groundwater supply. The
majority of rural residences in western Vermont obtain drinking water
from bedrock wells. Kim will discuss to what extent community members
are at risk. He will also address current knowledge regarding the
origin of radionuclides in Vermont groundwater, including occurrences
in the Middlebury vicinity.

On Tuesday, April 17, John I. Garver,
professor of geology at Union College, will deliver the second
lecture, "Doing Science in Kamchatka, the Russian Far East." Garver,
a member of the Middlebury class of 1983, will discuss a land known
for its scenic beauty, bears, salmon, volcanoes and military
hardware. Since the breakup of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s,
Western scientists eagerly have made their way into formerly closed
territory in the Russian Far East. Such access provided a
long-awaited opportunity to study northwest Pacific geology and the
area’s little known terrain and terrain movements.

According to Garver, conducting
research in Kamchatka has not been easy. Together with colleagues
from the Institute of the Lithosphere in Moscow and Yale University,
he has worked to understand the tectonic evolution of the Kamchatka
Peninsula since 1993. His talk will offer highlights of this
research, and also describe some of the logistical hurdles that are
atypical for this kind of field science, but typical in modern
Russia.

Both lectures will be held at 4:30
p.m. in Room 219 of Bicentennial Hall on Bicentennial Way off College
Street (Route 125). Both events are free and open to the public. For
more information, contact Trish
Dougherty
, geology department
coordinator, at 443-5970.

To follow is events calendar listings
information:

Events Calendar
Listings

Thursday, April 5

4:30 p.m.

Lecture: "Geologic Context
of Naturally-Occurring Radionuclide Problems in Northwestern
Vermont
," Jon Kim of the Vermont Geological Survey. Kim will
discuss to what extent community members are at risk, and address the
current state of knowledge regarding the origin of radionuclides in
Vermont groundwater, including occurrences in the Middlebury
vicinity.

 

Tuesday, April 17

4:30 p.m.

Lecture: "Doing Science in
Kamchatka, the Russian Far East
," John I. Garver, professor of
geology at Union College and member of the Middlebury College class
of 1983. After years of being closed off to the international
scientific community, this region with a rich tectonic evolution
still presents hurdles to scientists conducting research.

 

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