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Future directions in geobiology and low-temperature geochemistry

Elements

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Abstract

Humanity is confronted with an enormous challenge, as succinctly stated by the late Steven Schneider (2001; quoted by Jantzen 2004*): “Humans are forcing the Earth’s environmental systems to change at a rate that is more advanced than their knowledge of the consequences.” Geobiologists and low-temperature geochemists characterize material from the lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere to understand processes operating within and between these components of the Earth system from the atomic to the planetary scale. For this reason, the interwoven disciplines of geobiology and low-temperature geochemistry are central to understanding and ultimately predicting the behavior of these life-sustaining systems. We present here comments and recommendations from the participants of a workshop entitled “Future Directions in Geobiology and Low-Temperature Geochemistry,” hosted by the Carnegie Institution of Washington, Geophysical Laboratory, Washington, DC, on 27–28 August 2010. The goal of the workshop was to suggest ways to leverage the vast intellectual and analytical capabilities of our diverse scientific community to characterize the Earth’s past, present, and future geochemical habitat as we enter the second decade of what E. O. Wilson dubbed “the century of the environment.”

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Future directions in geobiology and low-temperature geochemistry
Series title:
Elements
Volume:
7
Issue:
2
Year Published:
2011
Language:
English
Publisher:
GeoScienceWorld
Contributing office(s):
Crustal Geophysics and Geochemistry Science Center
Description:
2
Larger Work Title:
Elements
First page:
138
Last page:
139