Articles tagged with: Francine McCarthy

  • Earth Sciences prof and MSc student co-author journal identifying evidence of ancient earthquakes

    The history of New England’s most damaging earthquake is written in the mud beneath a Massachusetts pond. Researchers identified the first sedimentary evidence of the Cape Ann earthquake, which in 1755 shook the East Coast from Nova Scotia to South Carolina. The quake, estimated to have been at least magnitude 5.9, took no lives but damaged hundreds of buildings.

    Within a mud core retrieved from the bottom of Sluice Pond in Lynn, Mass., a light brown layer of sediment stands out amid darker layers of organic-rich sediment, the researchers report March 27 in Seismological Research Letters. The 2-centimeter-thick layer contains tiny fossils usually found near the shore, as well as types of pollen different from those found in the rest of the core. Using previous studies of the pond’s deposition rates, geologist Katrin Monecke of Wellesley College in Massachusetts and her colleagues determined the layer dates to between 1740 and 1810.

    Professor of Earth Sciences, Francine McCarthy and MSc student Justin Pentesco are co-authors on the journal article.

    Read the full release here

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  • Access to Dr. Francine McCarthy’s Invited Paper

    In November, Dr. Francine McCarthy presented a talk on “Freshwater resources in the Great Lakes Region – yesterday, today, and tomorrow…” as part of the Environmental Sustainability Research Centre’s Transdisciplinary Seminar Series.

    Now, you can access the invited paper on which her Sustainability talk was based.

    Management of freshwater resources requires an understanding of the response of lakes to human impact. The long sedimentary records in lake archives hold the key to accurate forecasting. The remains of algae in “pollen” slides record two distinct phases of cultural eutrophication and siltation/turbidity resulting from soil erosion in sediments from two lakes in southern Ontario, Canada: 1) agricultural settlements by Iroquoian (Wendat/Huron) people around the middle of the last millennium and 2) widespread land-clearing by European colonists in the mid-nineteenth century, followed by industrial expansion and urbanization in the Great Lakes watershed to the present day. The half-cells of benthic desmids were particularly sensitive to turbidity associated with land clearing. In contrast, planktonic algae adapted to eutrophic waters thrived in response to increased agricultural runoff and human and animal waste during both intervals in cores from Lake Simcoe and in the well-documented varved sediments from Crawford Lake. These under-utilized microfossils can be useful proxies of human impact, particularly where mineralized microfossils are sparse due to dissolution.

    Access the paper here

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  • Tour to explore geologic history of campus

    With a little bit of knowledge and a lot of imagination, Earth Sciences Professor Francine McCarthy plans to help curious minds uncover the geologic past of the Brock campus. During an hourlong guided walking tour of the University property, held as part of Science Literacy Week, McCarthy will provide insight into the geology of the landscape.

    WHEN: Tuesday, September 19 from 5-6pm (arrive early)

    WHERE: Meet in the James A. Gibson Library, Matheson Learning Commons


    NOTE: Wear appropriate clothing and footwear as the tour will run rain or shine

    More information about the tour and programming for Science Literacy Week here


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  • Earth Sciences Professor Francine McCarthy on harmful algal blooms

    Brock University’s Earth Sciences professor, Francine McCarthy provides further insight on the harmful algal blooms predicted for western Lake Erie in her interview with The Tribune. As McCarthy explains, “While the western end of Lake Erie will always be hit hardest by harmful algal blooms, it doesn’t mean the eastern end is immune. It could certainly happen here.” Read the full interview here

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