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Environmental geology: Our professional public responsibility

Environmental Geology

By:
and
DOI: 10.1007/s002540050353

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Abstract

Conflicts between different interest groups for use of natural resources is one area where state geological surveys can provide assistance. A state geological survey working within the scientific constraints of specific issues can remain objective in its presentations and maintain the faith of both the conflicting interest groups and the public. One cannot vary from the objective view or you will quickly be criticized. Criticism can still occur from one side of a natural resource issue as your data might counter their views. However, the final decisions are almost always made in some legislators, or regulators, area of responsibility. The responsibility of the state geological survey is to provide the important data that will assist in making correct decisions. Should one party in the conflict become extreme in their demands, a potential compromise that is beneficial to both sides can be lost. In Kansas, the classical natural resource problem of resource/recreation in a populated area is presented as a case study. The state geological survey presented data on sand resources in the Kansas River and its valley in northeast Kansas. That information was important to both recreation and dredging interests where the political problem is a conflict of sand use as a construction material resource versus use of the alluvial river as an important recreation area, especially for canoeing. However, when a reasonable compromise was near completion in the Kansas Legislature one side, in a bold move to develop an advantage, ruined that potential for compromise.Conflicts between different interest groups for use of natural resources is one area where state geological surveys can provide assistance. A state geological survey working within the scientific constraints of specific issues can remain objective in its presentations and maintain the faith of both the conflicting interest groups and the public. In Kansas, the classical natural resource problem of resource/recreation in a populated area is presented as a case study. The state geological survey presented data on sand resources in the Kansas River and its valley in northeast Kansas. That information was important to both recreation and dredging interests.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Environmental geology: Our professional public responsibility
Series title:
Environmental Geology
DOI:
10.1007/s002540050353
Volume
37
Issue:
1-2
Year Published:
1999
Language:
English
Publisher:
Springer-Verlag GmbH & Company KG
Publisher location:
Berlin, Germany
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Environmental Geology
First page:
1
Last page:
8