USGS - science for a changing world

GMEG - Mineral and Environmental Resources

Project activities in the Spokane Office

Quantitative Global Mineral Resource Asessment - In response to the growing demand for information on the global mineral-resource base, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting the Quantitative Global Mineral Resource Assessment Project (GMRAP), a cooperative international project, begun in 2002, to assess the world's undiscovered nonfuel mineral resources.

Western Region MRP GIS-This project provides 1) coordination and standardization of digital activities for the MRSP in the Western Region (exclusive of Alaska 2) GIS support for other MRSP projects within the Western Region (exclusive of Alaska) 3) Geoscience information and interpretations to land management agencies and develops new interagency research projects with those agencies. - Project Leader: Pam Dunlap

Spokane GIS Team - GIS Research and Support in one of the three MRSP Resource Activity Areas in the Western Region, Northwest Area (WA, OR, ID.) Task Leader: Pam Cossette

Western Minerals Outreach - The goals of this project are to maintain the Western Minerals Website, to create outreach materials that describe our Program and project work in the western region, attend selected regional or National minerals related conventions to promote our work, and foster internal communications among the projects. - Project Leader: Dave Frank

Completed projects:

Coeur d'Alene Life-Cycle Models - Goals of this project are to: provide unbiased scientific information to agencies undertaking remedial actions in the Coeur d'Alene basin so that they can focus limited resources on the most effective remediation strategies; and to develop comprehensive mineral deposit and geoenvironmental models of the Coeur d'Alene deposits. - Project Leader: Laurie Balistrieri

Geologic and Geoenvironmental Studies of the Western Phosphate Field - This five-year (1998-2002) research effort employs integrated, multifaceted, multidisciplinary, multiagency scientific investigations designed to improve our understanding of ore deposition and extent, alteration, weathering, ore concentration, and trace element concentration, mobilization, and transport processes. This research is expected to contribute to development of solutions and (or) alternative management practices for the environmental problems associated with the presence and mining of these deposits. U.S. Geological Survey scientists associated with this project, a response to Federal land management needs, are studying the elemental, mineralogical, petrochemical, and stratigraphic character of phosphate mineralization within the Southeast Idaho Phosphate District and in selected portions of the Western Phosphate Field. Impacts on the environment associated with the presence and development of the Phosphoria Formation are also being examined. Concentrated initially in Southeast Idaho, this study is enhancing our ability to evaluate additional phosphate mineralization and to anticipate, assess, and mitigate environmental hazards, such as selenium toxicity, that are spatially associated with the existence and societal use (mining and reclamation) of the phosphate.- Mineralogical Task Leader: Phil Moyle

Headwaters Province, Idaho and Montana: Earth Science Studies in Support of Public Policy Development and Land Stewardship - The overall objectives of the Headwaters project are to provide geoscience data for, and integrate research with, scientists in the FLMA and elsewhere who are working on the links between earth science and biology. The project will employ a problem-solving process-oriented approach to expand on information about rock units, including the processes of mineralization, alteration, and weathering that have affected them, as an important framework that both supports and influences biologic processes. The objectives and tasks of this project manifest Geologic Division goals and strategic actions presented in "Geology for a Changing World" (USGS Circular 1172). The specific project outcomes involve four interdependent objectives. - Project Leaders: Karen Lund/Mike Zientek

Metallogenesis of Proterozoic Basins and stratified rocks - The major objective of this project is to refine our understanding of the broad-scale processes that control the source, movement, and concentration of base- and precious-metals in Proterozoic basinal and stratified rocks. The study is focused on basins and sequences of Proterozoic strata and their ore deposits in the US, but it will also include other basins for comparison. Improved understanding of the processes that generate globally important sources of base and precious metals will allow better estimation of the national and global endowment of associated deposits and will refine the genetic models that aid in the search for additional deposits in the US and worldwide. Project leader: Steve Box

SIMWS-Sources of Industrial Minerals in Western States - The Western Industrial Minerals Project provides a means for researchers to pursue potentially fertile research topics, anticipate and develop new scientific approaches, investigate modeling applications, & develop or improve methods. The objectives of the project are to develop new and emerging approaches, methods, and modeling applications in industrial minerals; to allow pursuit and investigation of promising science research topics; and to ensure a national perspective for scientific activities in industrial minerals- Associate Project Leader: Dave Frank


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