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GMEG - Geology and Geophysics


Neotectonics of the northern Mojave Desert

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The ecology connection to geologic mapping: The advancement of digital mapping technologies have made it possible to model relationships between earth surface materials and other variables such as climate change and ecology. The largely undeveloped Mojave Desert region is an ideal location to evaluate the relationships between water supply, geology, ecology, and land-use practices. Combining geologic bedrock and surficial maps with plant cover and land-use history data can provide valuable insight into how ecosystems will respond to climate change and human-induced changes to a desert landscape. Geology, (soils) and ecology interactions are partially understood, but new mapping technologies are creating opportunities to evaluate whole ecosystems on a regional scale by combining a variety of dataset with field observations.

Photograph show barren and vegetated ground on an alluvial fan.

graphic provided by Dave Miller

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