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Radio Interview Explores African Dust, Human Health, and Mystery Novels

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On January 15, Ginger Garrison, Gene Shinn, and geologist/novelist Sarah Andrews answered questions on a 1-hour talk show hosted by Michael Krasny of KQED radio in San Francisco, which enjoys a regular audience of 60,000 people. The subjects were African dust blown into the Caribbean, and Sarah's new book Fault Line. A former USGS geologist and now a successful novelist, Sarah arranged the show. Her next book, due at the printers in June for a release in early 2003, sports the working title Killer Dust.

Listen to the Interview
KQED Forum Archive: January 15, 2002, 10am
Sarah conducted a workshop on writing for the public at the USGS office in St. Petersburg, FL, last year. She became interested in African dust research and how dust clouds could be used to deliver bioweapons. Never fear, we know Em Hansen, the lady geologist and forensic sleuth in Sarah's novels, will use her clever geological skills to save the world from untold horrors. If you have read any of her novels, such as Bone Hunter or An Eye for Gold, then you will know they contain abundant references to USGS research. You might even recognize "bits and pieces" of geologists you know as either murder victims or heroes.

Sarah began her career in geology with investigations into windblown sediment at the USGS, where she was a close associate of the late, legendary Edwin D. McKee, an expert on sand dunes and delta deposits around the world. After leaving the USGS, she worked for Amoco (getting oil out of eolian sandstone) and ANGUS Petroleum, then did a "tour of duty" in environmental services. She says the only way she could get through long, boring meetings for a Superfund site was "by picking someone across the table as a murder victim and then trying to figure out who killed him." Before long, people at the table were saying, "Please kill me." (We never have meetings like that at the USGS!) All that led to publishing mystery novels, which led to her receiving journalism awards from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) and the Rocky Mountain Association of Geologists (RMAG), and the Shea Award for writing from the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT). Her books take geology to the public.

Now Ginger, Gene, Dale Griffin, and Christina Kellogg, who study the effects of African dust on Caribbean coral reefs and human health, are wondering, "Who gets to be killed in Killer Dust?"

Related Sound Waves Stories
Caribbean Coral-Reef Ecologist Studies Dust from the African Sahel
March 2002

Related Web Sites
Coral Mortality & African Dust Project
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
Forum Program Archive—January 14—January 18, 2002
Radio Station KQED—National Public Radio (NPR)
Sarah Andrews
Sonoma State University

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in this issue: Fieldwork cover story:
African Sahel Dust

Outreach Aleutians Documentary

Radio Interview Explores African Dust

Florida Coastal Storm Defenses

Crystal Demonstration

Oceans Day 2002

Home-Schooled Tour

Black History Month

Environmental Academy Web Site

Regional Science Fair

Meetings Fishing Symposium

Congressional Briefing—Sea Otter Research

Contracting Meeting

Lake Mead

SEABED Technology

Law of the Sea

Awards Recycling Program

Staff & Center News Bill Dillon Retires

John Hughes Clarke—"Imaging Water Mass Variability"

Deltas Seminar

Publications March Publications List

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