ADVANCING GEOHERITAGE IN THE UNITED STATES: PARTNERING WITH THE STATES
Key goals of the advisory group include working with aspiring communities interested in developing their geological heritage; hosting an invitational U.S. geoheritage workshop in 2020; and collaborating with partners, including the Geological Society of America, the Association of American State Geologists, and the American Geosciences Institute, to develop programs that highlight individual states’ geological diversity. Goals of these partnerships include:
- Develop common terminology to describe geological heritage features and landscapes.
- Inventory sites and landmarks of geological significance (a geosite inventory).
- Assist communities in organizing their geoheritage into guides, trails, parks, etc.
- Link to other state agencies (tourism, education, parks) to promote the benefits of celebrating a state’s geological heritage.
A review of state geological survey websites shows a wide variety in presentation and organization, but most have sections that include education, publications, mapping, geohazards, and mineral/energy/water resources. There is also a wide variety of educational information available on the state survey websites. Most present formal geo-education curricular information geared towards K-12 (“Educator Resources”) as well as basic scientific information geared towards the general public. Most geological survey websites also feature in-depth information about that state’s distinctive natural features and geological highlights. These presentations vary widely in style, level of detail, and organization. Some notable examples include: Utah - the Calendar of Utah Geology; the Texas GeoSign Project; the New Mexico: Virtual Geologic Tour; the Pennsylvania: 30 Outstanding Geologic Features (ranked & geographically organized); and the Indiana publication: ABCs of Indiana Geology