2005 Salt Lake City Annual Meeting (October 16–19, 2005)

Paper No. 11
Presentation Time: 8:00 AM-12:00 PM


STAMM, Nancy, Earth Surface Processes, U.S. Geol Survey, 12201 Sunrise Valley Dr, Reston, VA 20192, SOLLER, David, Earth Surface Processes, U.S. Geological Survey, 12201 Sunrise Valley Dr, Reston, VA 20192 and RICHARD, Stephen, Arizona Geological Survey, 416 W. Congress St, Suite 100, Tucson, AZ 85701, nstamm@usgs.gov

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the state geological surveys are responsible for design and content of a national archive of geoscience information, the National Geologic Map Database (NGMDB, http://ngmdb.usgs.gov). This national archive will include paleontologic data. For over one hundred years, USGS paleontologists have supplied essential biostratigraphic information to geologic mapping projects that range in focus from environmental to economic geology. However, most of this valuable information was not included with the final map product, and remains unpublished. The paleontologic data, along with outcrop and borehole descriptions and measured sections, are an essential resource for geologic mapping and related sciences, both today and for the future. These data are found in paper reports stored in filing cabinets, and must now be converted to electronic format and managed in the NGMDB. The NGMDB database will be distributed among, potentially, more than 50 agencies, each using a somewhat different hardware and software platform. In order for this distributed map database to be most useful to the public, we must devise a flexible and comprehensive data structure and science terminology. Therefore, we are engaged in a comprehensive standards-development effort in collaboration with the Geological Survey of Canada, the North American Data Model Steering Committee (http://nadm-geo.org/), the U.S. Federal Geographic Data Committee, and the IUGS's Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information (http://www.bgs.ac.uk/cgi_web/welcome.html). Using the North American Geologic Map Data Model standards along with standards developed by the biological community, the paleontologic component of the NGMDB is being designed. When this information becomes available through our database, paleontologists and geologic mappers will be able to easily access and review the original data in order to use it for new mapping and science investigations, and to revise the original paleontologic and stratigraphic interpretations based on current knowledge.