Public Release: 

From gold mines to sand hills

The Geological Society of America's Southeastern Section Meeting

Geological Society of America

Boulder, Colorado, USA - Geoscientists from the southeastern United States and beyond will convene in Columbia, South Carolina, USA, on 31 March-1 April to discuss new science, expand on existing science, and explore the unique geologic features of the region. Topics at this 65th Annual SE Section Meeting include coastal geology, environmental education, fossils, earthquake hazards, and gold exploration.

The University of South Carolina's Earth Sciences and Resources Institute, School of the Earth, Ocean and Environment, Department of Earth and Ocean Sciences, and College of Arts and Sciences are meeting sponsors.

Field Trips

A pre-meeting field trip will depart 30 March to explore the Haile Gold Mine. Post-meeting trips will visit Congaree National Park, Carolina Sandhills National Wildlife Refuge, and Arc Terranes of the eastern Piedmont.

Selected Highlights of the Scientific Program

The scientific program is composed of oral and poster presentations organized into one symposium and 23 themed sessions covering an array of geoscience disciplines.


Surface Water, Groundwater, and Biogeochemical Processes in the Coastal Zone

These Thursday afternoon talks will examine several health and safety issues around water systems affecting human and wildlife populations.


Lead author Bryant Mountjoy (, Western Carolina University, looks at the concentrations of lead from bullets from an outdoor shooting range in sediment, groundwater, and surface water, compared to natural background levels, in order to provide information regarding preventative measures against lead contamination.


Extreme rainfall effects in South Carolina, October 2015

These Friday afternoon talks promise greater clarity about the second largest disaster in South Carolina since hurricane Hugo in 1989.


Lead Author Charlie Kaufman, South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD) (, will examine impacts of the "rain bomb" that dropped more than 24 inches in ~36 hours in some areas of the state, from the perspective of SCEMD operations. Analysis includes GIS maps of total rainfall, known water and flooding locations and depths, and dam and road failures, which have been combined with demographic and economic information to better understand the current and projected costs for the state of South Carolina to fully recover from this historical flooding event.

View the complete session schedule by day or search the program by keywords at Click on session titles for a list of presentations, and click on presentations for the individual abstracts.

Find complete meeting information at .

Find local contact information at


Eligibility for media registration is as follows:

  • Working press representing bona fide, recognized news media with a press card, letter or business card from the publication.
  • Freelance science writers, presenting a current membership card from NASW, ISWA, regional affiliates of NASW, ISWA, CSWA, ACS, ABSW, EUSJA, or evidence of work pertaining to science published in 2015 or 2016.
  • PIOs of scientific societies, educational institutions, and government agencies.

Present media credentials to William Cox onsite at the GSA registration desk to obtain a badge for media access. Complimentary meeting registration covers attendance at all technical sessions and access to the exhibit hall. Journalists and PIOs must pay regular fees for paid luncheons and any short courses or field trips in which they participate. Representatives of the business side of news media, publishing houses, and for-profit corporations must register at the main registration desk and pay the appropriate fees.


For additional information and assistance, contact Christa Stratton, GSA Director of Communications, at the address above.

The Geological Society of America, founded in 1888, is a scientific society with more than 26,000 members from academia, government, and industry in more than 100 countries. Through its meetings, publications, and programs, GSA enhances the professional growth of its members and promotes the geosciences in the service of humankind. Headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, GSA encourages cooperative research among earth, life, planetary, and social scientists, fosters public dialogue on geoscience issues, and supports all levels of earth science education.

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