Monday, June 27, 2011

Favourite Geology Word

I've been thinking about the current Accretionary Wedge topic intermittently, because there are a lot of geology words I love, for either phonetic or geological reasons. But I've been preoccupied with my sister's wedding of late, and those words have buried themselves somewhere in the recesses of my mind. Now that I'm back home, I can start thinking about rocks again, and perhaps those words will come back to me.

In the meantime, there is a word that represents a lot of what my master's thesis is about and if used literally, speaks to why I became an earth scientist. Without further adieu, I give you,


Geohistory, or as I more often call it, subsidence analysis, analyzes a sediment column to reveal information about the tectonic conditions it was deposited in. You literally peel back the layers and try to restore the sediments to their depositional conditions. In the case of the master's thesis I am writing write now, I'm looking at subsurface wells in the Western Canada Foreland Basin to show the link between the Cordillera and the foreland basin.

I love this work because it is big picture geology. It ties together the mountains and the basin, and reinforces the fact that you have to understand the regional tectonic framework to study a sedimentary basin.

What does this have to do with why I became a geoscientist? From a very young age, I knew that whatever career I ended up having, I wanted to be a storyteller. I never imagined that I would be reading the rocks to understand and retell the story of the earth, but that's what we all do. In a very literal sense of the term, what we all do is geohistory.


  1. Gorgeous! I love this! And thank you so much for being one of those who tells those stories, which folks like me find themselves captivated by.