USGS Funding for Monitoring Changes in Earth’s Crust

Central Washington University, Berkeley-based University of California, San Diego-based University of California, Berkeley and UNAVCO have been awarded $2.7 million by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) by way of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act’s six cooperative agreements.

The act that was passed in 2009 provides an amount of $3 billion for the U.S. Department of the Interior, out of which the USGS uses $140 million for funding projects that meet the goals of the Recovery Act. The funds of the act are a component of a stimulus package, a key part of the plan of the President for jumpstarting the economy. These funds will act as a down payment for tackling challenges that were neglected for a long time, making the U.S. prosper during the 21st century. The Interior Department, under this ACT, is investing to conserve the timeless treasures of the U.S., such as the icons of the country’s heritage and culture, liberty monuments, and natural landscapes, besides enabling U.S. families and communities to prosper again. Interior is also working on renewable energy projects, the requirements of American Indians, utilizing the youth and encouraging community service.

This award is for the enhancement of networks utilized in detecting small changes caused in the crust of the earth due to faults in regions that are prone to earthquakes. The evaluation of the expected rate of major earthquakes requires monitoring such minute changes. The funds will be used for enhancing the monitoring capabilities through replacement of sensors aged more than ten years and improvement in communications, resulting in additional dependable real-time data streams.

USGS’ senior science advisor for geologic hazards and earthquake, David Applegate informed that the enhancements in advanced geodesy will result in improving the U.S. Geological Survey and its cooperators’ ability for real-time monitoring of the manner in which the strain develops across the hazardous faults.

Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior, has appointed an Interior Economic Recovery Task Force and Chris Henderson, a Senior Advisor for Economic Recovery, for functioning with the Interior's Inspector General for ensuring that the recovery plan matches the high transparency, accountability and responsibility standards established by President Obama.


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