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USGS Participates in Groundwater-Seawater Interactions Symposium at IUGG Assembly in Italy

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Via Appia
Above: Via Appia winds uphill toward the historic center of the old city of Perugia. Photograph courtesy of J.F. Bratton. [larger version]

For almost 2 weeks last summer (July 2-13, 2007), participants from around the world, including a delegation of 22 U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists, gathered for the 24th International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG) General Assembly in the historic town of Perugia, Italy. IUGG general assemblies are held every 4 years; the previous one was in Japan in 2003, and the 2011 site has yet to be determined. The IUGG meeting, attended by approximately 4,400 scientists, included a broad range of geoscience topics (for a full scientific program, visit URL http://www.iugg2007perugia.it/). One session that included substantial USGS participation was a symposium titled "A New Focus on Groundwater-Seawater Interactions," which was expertly convened by Ward Sanford (USGS, Reston, Virginia), and co-convened by Christian Langevin (USGS, Fort Lauderdale, Florida), Maurizio Polemio (National Research Council, Italy), and Pavel Povinec (Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia). 

USGS scientists Peter Swarzenski (Santa Cruz, California) and John Bratton (Woods Hole, Massachusetts) contributed presentations on topics related to submarine ground-water discharge during the 2-day symposium. The session was well attended by oceanographers and hydrologists, an indication that this burgeoning interdisciplinary field is benefiting from both marine and terrestrial perspectives. The 27 presentations and additional posters provided clear evidence for the importance of incorporating realistic geologic information into sophisticated variable-density flow models, and for the strength of new geochemical and geophysical tools that can locate and quantify submarine ground-water discharge. The International Association of Hydrological Sciences (IAHS) published a proceedings volume consisting of 38 presented papers (IAHS Publication 312, URL http://www.cig.ensmp.fr/~iahs/redbooks/312.htm). The symposium succeeded at the challenging task of bridging many of the gaps in understanding and methodology that exist among the various subdisciplines of oceanography, hydrogeology, geophysics, geochemistry, numerical modeling, and resource management as applied to the topic of water and chemical fluxes across the sea floor.

map of Italy cover of proceedings volume
Above left: Italy, showing location of Perugia. [larger version]

Above right: The conveners of our session also edited a proceedings volume that contained 38 papers and was published by IAHS. The complete reference for the volume is: Sanford, Ward, Langevin, Christian, Polemio, Maurizio, and Povinec, Pavel, eds., 2007, A new focus on groundwater-seawater interactions: IAHS Publication 312, 344 p. [URL http://www.cig.ensmp.fr/~iahs/redbooks/312.htm]. [larger version]

Related Web Sites
A New Focus on Groundwater Seawater Interactions
USGS (U.S. Geological Survey)
International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics Meeting
International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics

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