India and Thailand will be the site for the first two projects sponsored by the Geoscientists Without Borders program.
The initial project will tackle the water crisis in rural India.
Clemson University and the Foundation for Ecological Security, an India non-profit, will use electromagnetic induction to map soil moisture and shallow aquifers in the Salri watershed in the State of Madhya Pradesh, India.
The scarcity of fresh water is a longstanding problem in central India that impacts the health, productivity and quality of life for millions. Even though the annual rainfall for the area is reasonable — between 45 and 60 inches — most of it falls in only three months of the year. The goal of this project is to increase the water supply through water capture, storage and usage management. Geoscientists Without Borders will provide tools and knowledge that will assist villagers in making water management decisions that will favorably impact water supply throughout the year. Stephen Moysey of Clemson University and Rangoori Ravindranath of the Foundation for Ecological Security will lead the efforts.
This program, launched earlier this year, applies geophysical technology to the needs of people from all areas of the globe through targeted projects designed to tangibly impact the community around them, said Gary Servos, chairman of the SEG Foundation directors.
Three distinct humanitarian efforts will take place in northern Thailand encompassing efforts to 1) mitigate earthquake hazards, 2) address water quality issues, and 3) preserve cultural heritage through archaeological mapping.
Seismic, ground penetrating radar, electrical, gravity, and magnetic methods are to be used to address geotechnical problems in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Boise State University, in partnership with Chiang Mai University in Thailand will advance humanitarian geophysics in Southeast Asia through a student-based approach, by teaching students geophysical skills that can be used in their home regions.
Undergraduate and graduate students, as well as professionals and teachers, will gain hands-on experience with geophysical data acquisition, processing, and interpretation, creating reports that address local environmental and engineering problems. Leading the effort are Research Scientist Lee Liberty, Kaspar Van Wijk, and Spencer Wood of Chiang Mai University (retired from Boise State University), and Fongsaward Singharajwarapan and Siriporn Chaisri, of Chiang Mai University, Thailand.
“Geoscientists Without Borders was the dream of passionate committed individuals in SEG, brought into reality with the key founding investment by Schlumberger. Keep your eye on this program because this is just the beginning and I am proud to be a part of it.”