2003 Seattle Annual Meeting (November 2–5, 2003)

Paper No. 13
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM


MOORE, Andrew1, DILABIO, Ron1, THORLEIFSON, Harvey2, MATILE, Gaywood3, PYNE, Matthew1, MURRAY, Ross1 and ANDRÉE, Bolduc4, (1)Geol Survey of Canada, 601 Booth St, Ottawa, ON K1A 0E8, Canada, (2)Minnesota Geol Survey, University of Minnesota, 2642 University Ave W, St. Paul, MN 55114-1057, (3)Manitoba Geological Survey, Manitoba Industry, Trade, and Mines, 360 – 1395 Ellice Ave, Winnipeg, MB, (4)Geological Survey of Canada, Nat Rscs Canada, 880 Chemin Ste-Foy, Room: 840, Quebec, QC G1S 2L2, Canada, thorleif@umn.edu

There are ever-increasing demands from client groups for high quality, consistent surficial geology information for many applications such as groundwater protection, industrial mineral management, land protection and land-use planning, basic research, mineral exploration, engineering, and environmental assessment. The ability to access consistent information based on a common data model and science language will greatly enhance activity in these fields of study and public concern. The Government of Canada is making access to its information and knowledge a priority. Geological mapping is one such area where a distributed database based on the North American Data Model (NADM 5.x) is being developed to archive not only the scientific interpretation and geospatial components, but also a normalized science language that describes the key attributes of the geologist’s legend (interpretation). A common data model for surficial geology knowledge, including a common science language or taxonomy, will retain the integrity and consistency of the information accessed from multiple sources. This effort involves the cooperation of federal and provincial geoscience agencies in Canada and internationally with the USGS and the Association of American State Geologists (AASG) through the NADM Steering Committee, the development of the National Geologic Map Database (NGMDB), and the work of the NADM Science Language Technical Team (SLTT). The required set of attributes and terminology is being compiled by referring to existing expert-driven terminologies, while also being guided by content-driven terminology. The database also will be used to quantitatively assess the suitability of the language and to link language definitions to those developed by the SLTT. The deployment of this distributed infrastructure through the Canadian Geoscience Knowledge Network and the NGMDB is facilitated by the exploitation of technology through the development of tools and protocols and by embedding these technologies within a process. Cooperation and coordination across federal, provincial and state lines is also essential in providing consistent surficial geological information to reach a truly North American solution.