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My primary research interest is understanding the mechanisms which sustained a warm climate in the early Pliocene, the most recent period of time when Earth’s temperatures were warmer than they are today for a sustained period of time. I’ve organized and participated in a number of field trips the past few years; none more exciting and rewarding than the 2003 Annual Pacific Cell Friends of the Pleistocene field trip to Dixie Valley, Nevada. Similar to other arid and semiarid regions, an available and clean source of water is especially critical for sustainable society.
My records of sea surface temperatures (SST) in the tropical and sub-tropical oceans have demonstrated that the worlds upwelling regions, which are very biologically productive and characterized by cool temperatures in the modern ocean, were significantly warmer during the early Pliocene compared to today (water off of California was 9°C warmer! As I establish my lab here at SFSU I plan to pursue several research questions to further improve our understanding of the warm pliocene: Are warmer upwelling regions during the early Pliocene associated with major changes in biological productivity? In keeping with tradition, the Friends trip was an epic experience, camping out under a star-filled desert sky and full moon with over 200 crazy students and professionals for three days and nights. However, many water resources are threatened because of depletion and contamination from human activities and climate variability and change.
As a sedimentary geologist and geobiologist, I use field, petrographic, and geochemical approaches to understand different scales of environmental change as recorded in the sedimentary rock record. While each is unique, these mountain belts have one thing in common: ultrahigh-pressure eclogite-facies rocks.
Most of my work has been on the biogeochemistry of fluvial and lacustrine carbonate microbialites. The eclogites form in subduction zone complexes in the suture zones of mountain belts (where two continents are essentially stitched together) and record a complete pressure-temperature-time history from comprising the edge of a continent, to subduction into the upper mantle and then the return path back to the surface.
Groundwater enhances water supplies because it has a capacity to help meet water needs during periods of increased demand during drought and when surface-water resources are close the limits of sustainability.
Therefore, it is critical to improve understanding of groundwater interactions within the global water cycle, supports ecosystems and society, and responds to complex human activities that are coupled to natural-climate variability (such as the El Niño/Southern Oscillation) and human induced climate change.
San Francisco, CA 94132 Contact: Roger Dang Administrative Analyst Department Office Manager Phone: (415) 338-2993 Email: [email protected] Gurdak well sampling with students.B Geology/Physics-Mathematics - Brown University Sc. M Climate Physics and Chemistry - Massachusetts Institute of Technology Ph. Earth & Planetary Science – UC Berkeley At SFSU since 2013 Phone: 415-338-1209 Office: 610 E-mail: [email protected] and/or Teaching Area: Climate change, reconstructions of past climates (particularly from tree rings), interactions of human societies and climate over the last ~4000 years, response of the global rain patterns to global warming, the annual cycle of climate variability.My research focuses on how to separate natural climate variability from human-induced climate change in the observational record.Petra Dekens Chair, Department of Earth & Climate Sciences Professor of Oceanography B. Marine Biology University of California, Santa Cruz MESM (Master of environmental Science and Manangement UC Santa Barbara MS Marine Science, UC Santa Barbara Ph. Ocean Sciences UC Santa Cruz At SFSU since 2007 Phone: (415) 338-6015 Office: TH 623 E-mail: [email protected] and/or Teaching Area: Paleoceanography / Paleoclimatology Direct temperature measurements only extend about two hundred years, during which time climate variations were relatively minor. Geology - University of Nevada, Reno At SFSU since 1998 Phone: (415) 405-0353 Office: TH 616 E-mail: [email protected] and/or Teaching Area: Neotectonics, seismotectonics of coastal central California and Nevada I continue to involve students in my summer research out in central Nevada focusing on a variety of recent and ongoing projects such as: patterns and rates of paleoseismicity in the central Nevada seismic belt; characteristics of active faults in relation to geothermal resources in the Basin and Range; paleoliquefaction in the Stillwater seismic gap; and pluvial lake histories and using pluvial lake shorelines as tiltmeters to measure isostatic and tectonic deformation.Paleoclimate research is therefore required to put the global warming trend of the last decades within the context of the Earth’s dynamic climate system. Much of the work we’ve accomplished over the past few years has recently come to fruition through manuscripts either accepted or submitted to the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America and the Journal of Geodynamics. Environmental Science and Engineering - Colorado School of Mines Ph. Geochemistry - Colorado School of Mines At SFSU since 2009 Phone: (415) 338-6869 Office: TH 537/538 E-mail: [email protected] Research and/or Teaching Area: Hydrogeology, vadose zone hydrology, aqueous geochemistry, groundwater contamination, hydroclimatology, and climate change/variability effects on water resources My research goals are the improved understanding of processes that affect the sustainability of water resource in California and the western United States.