Water, water everywhere

Jan 03, 2014
Mark Van Baalen, Ph.D., will give a talk on the remarkable physical properties of water, a substance essential for life as we know it on this planet and elsewhere Tuesday, Jan. 14 at Camden Public Library.

Camden — Environmentalist author Loren Eiseley wrote, “If there is magic on this planet, it is contained in water.”

Mark Van Baalen, Ph.D., will give a talk on the remarkable physical properties of water, a substance essential for life as we know it on this planet and elsewhere. Mark will discuss where water on Earth has come from, where it goes, and how it is stored in reservoirs of various types.

Aimed at the interested layperson, this scientific talk takes place Tuesday, Jan. 14, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Camden Public Library. It is free and open to all.

Van Baalen is a geologist at Harvard University. He received his A.B. in Astronomy in 1966, but later, he turned his attention to the Earth sciences, receiving his A.M. and Ph.D. in geology. Since 1995 he has been lecturer and associate in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Harvard. During that time he has taught popular courses in physical and environmental geology, and acted as mentor to many undergraduates.

His research has included field-based projects in New England, California and the Swiss Alps, all focusing on details of the origin of ancient ocean basins and their associated mountain belts. His approach has included careful study of mineral assemblages, particularly those containing Titanium, and the conditions under which those rock units were formed. Through a process of serendipity, he has become involved with the subject of asbestos and more broadly, of respiratory diseases linked to inhalation of mineral dusts. More recently he has studied the interactions between human activities and the inexorable process of climate change. In addition to these strictly scientific interests, Mark has a deep interest in history, including the exploration of remote regions of the world. He is also a commercial pilot and dedicated sailor.

This presentation is hosted by the Camden Public Library and offered as a free community event in in anticipation of the 27th Annual Camden Conference: The Global Politics of Food and Water, Feb. 21-23.

For more information, visit camdenconference.org, email info@camdenconference.org, or call 236-1034.

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