Marine Geology
Arctic Seabed Methane Stores Destabilizing, Venting
Written by Coby

The following was written in the beginning of March by climate change blogger Coby Beck.  I felt it would appeal to TRT readers and was kindly granted permission to repost.  I still think the news at hand is quite pertinent.

From up north, we have some more troubling news. Actually very troubling. Catastophic release of methane hydrates is a prime suspect in a few events dramatic enough to show in the earth's geological records, coarse and obscured as that record may be. (Our actions today will be featured prominently in that record for anyone looking back a million years from now.) It has been a worry for many years that humanity is running the risk of triggering such a release again, which would truly pile disaster on top of calamity.

New research coming out in Science Today indicates that this most dire of feedbacks may well be underway already. Below is the text of a press release I received about it last night.

Fairbanks, Alaska--A section of the Arctic Ocean seafloor that holds vast stores of frozen methane is showing signs of instability and widespread venting of the powerful greenhouse gas, according to the findings of an international research team led by University of Alaska Fairbanks scientists Natalia Shakhova and Igor Semiletov.
Volcano Rising
Written by Ava

He may be a historian by training, but Dr. Ralph Harrington really gets his blood pumping by studying volcanoes, a past time that has followed him since seeing his first volcano Vesuvias alongside the Bay of Naples when he was very small. 

He seems to know quite a lot about the connection between volcanoes and marine life too.  Through this Q&A with him, I learned that 80% of the world's volcanoes are beneath the ocean, many volcanoes are often associated with saltwater, but freshwater too, and that ocean acidification is often increased by volcanic activity (he points out a huge example in the interview below.) 

To appease his insatiable curiosity for volcanoes and earth science, Dr. Harrington started the Volcanism blog--the kind of blog he wished for in the past, but created himself.

Volcanoes and marine biology: Truly an ever intriguing topic, and one that has become even more fascinating thanks to Dr. Ralph Harrington.

The Volcanista
Written by Ava

We have another volcano connoisseur in our midst--and this time, it's a Volcanista! The creator of this magmalicious blog was at one time part of a university research group that studied volcanoes and volcanic hazards.  She's got one heck of a rock on her shoulders---and she loves it of course, hence the Volcanista terminalogy--a woman who is all things volcanology (she loves, researches, and visits volcanoes.)

Rock on!

Volcanista's blog of the same name is about all the things that interest her most in the field: geochemistry, academia, social justice, and of course, some fluff for good measure.

We got a chance to learn more about her fabulous volcano hobby.

What turned you on to studying volcanoes? Is it a hobby or something more? 

Carbonate Surprises
Written by Ava

He may be a geologist and carbonate sedimentologist who believes his PhD had a large focus on marine geology because the carbonate sediments he studied were the remains of an ancient marine environment.  But that's not all that's got us hooked on Suvrat Kher, the geology blogger who likes to write posts on his blog, Reporting on a Revolution, on everything from carbonate geology to climate change to evolution.  

He also speaks his mind on ocean acidification, which relate to his carbonate work, as an even a slight decrease in pH may cause a decrease in available carbonate ions used to build calcium carbonate skeletons. And of course, Suvrat is an avid believer that speaking your mind (whether by blog or other means) will help us change the marine world.  After all, he did help spark a change while blogging about the current water crises in India.  

We've always known a voice can make a different.  But who knew that voice would be one of a geologist--one who has proven the carbonate geology he studies relates so much to marine ecosystems. The Reef Tank is happy to learn all about it and Suvrat is here to tell us all he knows.

The Lost Geologist
Written by Ava

We're proud of Mathias Koester of Germany. Not only does he have a great geology blog, The Lost Geologist and focus much of his work on marine-related findings, but he's also slated become a full-fledged geologist very soon. He's currently working on what will surely be a fabulous thesis for his Masters degree in Germany and of course, that topic has to do with marine geology.

We just had to talk to him. The Lost Geologist specializes in the geology of mineral deposits and uses carbonate rocks as a resource and is amazed at their formation in marine ecosystems. He also gives us his opinion about marine conservation, climate change, and other important marine topics and how they may or may not have something to do with his work.

Check out his responses below.

Tell me about your background in geology, specifically your knowledge in marine geology? 

I'm a German Diplom degree student of Geology. Those unfamiliar with the German degree system can think of the Diplom as the same as a Masters degree. In October I will start work on my final thesis related to shallow-marine carbonate rocks and their resource quality. So I am about to be a full-fledged geologist soon.

Point of Eruption
Written by Ava

I've had the privilege of interviewing marine biologists, conservationists, evolutionists, and scientists.  Where to go from here?  Now that our Marine Geology has "erupted" onto the scene (pun totally intended), we're doing a Q&A with Dr. Erik W. Klemetti, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California who studies volcanism.

Yep, that's right, he studies all aspects of volcanoes from why it takes a certain amount of time to drive a particular volcano to erupt to the marks and ridges that erupted volcanoes leave behind.

"I am fascinated by volcanoes, their eruptions and how those eruptions interact with the people who live around the volcanoes," Dr. Klemetti writes on his blog Eruptions.

Geological Breakdown
Written by Ava

What does a rock geologist know about the ocean? That's what we were wondering when we first encountered San Francisco Bay Area resident Brian, a sedimentary geologist and researcher who writes mostly about Earth Science and energy issues but who frequents the marine world (ocean topography, sea-floors, rocks located near the ocean) as part of his work. Like the climate scientists, marine biologist, and reef hobbyists that have come before, does Brian have what it takes to, in his own way, make the marine world a better place?   

In our first marine geology interview, answering a series of questions brought to him by the TRT crew, let Brian tell you himself...