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Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center

Geosciences and Environmental Change Science Center (GECSC) researchers conduct multi-purpose geologic mapping and topical scientific studies to address issues concerning geologic, climatic, ecosystem, and land surface changes; human interactions with the environment; and physical, chemical, and biological characterization of the Earth's surface and upper crust. 

News

Media Alert: USGS field crews to study avalanche prone regions using airborne techniques near Durango

Media Alert: USGS field crews to study avalanche prone regions using airborne techniques near Durango

In monarch butterfly decline mystery, scientists rule out habitat loss in migration zone

In monarch butterfly decline mystery, scientists rule out habitat loss in migration zone

Friday's Findings - January 12, 2024

Friday's Findings - January 12, 2024

Publications

Recent advances in characterizing the crustal stress field and future applications of stress data: Perspectives from North America

The stress field controls patterns of crustal deformation, including which faults are likeliest to cause earthquakes or transmit fluids. Since the 1950s, maps of maximum horizontal stress (SHmax) orientations have advanced dramatically, and the style of faulting (relative principal stress magnitudes) has recently been mapped in some regions as well. This perspectives paper summarizes developments
Authors
Jens-Erik Lundstern

Land-use and land-cover change in the Lower Rio Grande Ecoregions, Texas, 2001–2011

Urban growth and other land-use changes were examined in the Lower Rio Grande Valley and Alluvial Floodplain ecoregions in Texas, along the U.S.-Mexico border. The analysis focused on understanding the types and causes of land change as well as the recovery of natural land-cover types between years 2001 and 2011. The purpose was to develop improved capabilities for understanding land change dynami
Authors
Mark A. Drummond, Michael P. Stier, Jamie L. McBeth

Simulating past and future fire impacts on Mediterranean ecosystems

Worldwide, large wildfires are becoming increasingly common, leading to economic damages and threatening ecosystems and human health. Under future climate change, more frequent fire disturbance may push ecosystems into non-forested alternative stable states. Fire-prone ecosystems such as those in the Mediterranean Basin are expected to be particularly vulnerable, but the position of tipping points
Authors
Christoph Schwörer, César Morales-Molino, Erika Gobet, Paul D. Henne, Salvatore Pasta, Tiziana Pedrotta, Jacqueline F. N. van Leeuwen, Boris Vannière, Willy Tinner