Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session

Course Description

The geologic record demonstrates that our environment has changed over a variety of time scales from seconds to billions of years. This course explores the many ways in which geologic and anthropologic processes control and modify the Earth's environment. Topics include: chemical and physical interactions between the solid Earth, its oceans and atmosphere; the effect of catastrophic events such as volcanic eruptions and earthquakes on the environment; geologic hazards; and our role in modifying the environment through earth resource development. This course serves as an introduction to Environmental Earth Science Field Course (12.120), which addresses field applications of these principles in the American Southwest.

Main Text

Buy at Amazon Merritts, D., A. de Wet, and K. Menking. Environmental Geology: an Earth System Science Approach. New York, NY: W.H. Freeman and Company, 1998. ISBN: 9780716728344.

Supplemental Texts

Buy at Amazon Keller, E. A. Environmental Geology. 8th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1999. ISBN: 9780130224668.

Buy at AmazonMontgomery, C. W. Environmental Geology. 6th ed. Boston, MA: McGraw-Hill, 2002. ISBN: 9780073661957.

Buy at AmazonPipken, B. W., and D. D. Trent. Geology and the Environment. 4th ed. California, CA: Brooks Cole, 2004. ISBN: 9780534490515.

Buy at AmazonThompson, G. R., and J. Turk. Environmental Geoscience. 3rd ed. Ft Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace and Company, 1997. ISBN: 9780030988660.


Problem Sets 30%
Exams 30%
Project 30%
Attendance and Participation 10%