IAGC - International Association of GeoChemistry

Urban Geochemistry: The Impact Of Legacy Infrastructure And Contaminants On The Environment And Public Health

July 27-28, 2015
Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan

Registration Opens: April, 2015| Registration Deadline: 13-July, 2015


More than half the global population currently lives in urban areas, according to UN estimates, with two-thirds of the world’s population expected to call urban areas home by 2050. Economic and population shifts impact urban environments in novel and undefined ways. Moderate to rapid economic growth results in vibrant modern cities, yet activities associated with this growth can have unintended consequences for the environment and public health. As urban centers evolve, infrastructure is continuously modified and often repurposed. While environmental assessments commonly accompany redevelopment, characterization of legacy contaminants is lacking - particularly in areas that have become abandoned. The decay of legacy or abandoned infrastructure on biogeochemical cycles undoubtedly impacts, often negatively, the health of ecosystems and humans. Although these effects are well accepted, the specifics of these changes and how they influence human and ecosystem health are not well defined.

Plan and Purpose:
Hosted in the heart of Detroit, Michigan - which exemplifies the challenges facing post-industrial cities with extensive urban decay - this workshop aims to explore the ways in which urban systems influence geochemistry and the associated environmental, ecosystem health  and human health implications. Workshop attendees will have the opportunity to witness first-hand geochemical cycles in a decaying urban environment through site visits, seminars and focused discussions. The workshop will culminate with the development of a white paper that will attempt to identify the specifics of urban geochemical changes and how they influence human and ecosystem health.

We invite oral (25 min) and poster presentations on urban geochemistry that fit within the above framework. Abstracts due July 15. Themes include, but are not limited to:

  • Ecological footprint of urban regions
  • Anthropogenic alterations to biogeochemical cycles
  • Human and ecosystem health
  • Source, transport/transformation and fate of urban contaminants

Conference Registration:
$200 for 2015 IAGC members, $225 for non-members

Registration includes workshop materials, shuttle between hotel and conference facility, and field excursions and lunch on Tuesday.




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