Geoscience in Your State: Rhode Island

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Cover of Geoscience Policy State Factsheet. Image credit: AGI

What is Geoscience?

Geoscience is the study of the Earth and the complex geologic, marine, atmospheric, and hydrologic processes that sustain life and the economy. Understanding the Earth’s surface and subsurface, its resources, history, and hazards allows us to develop solutions to critical economic, environmental, health, and safety challenges.

By the numbers: Rhode Island

990 geoscience employees (excludes self-employed)1

33 million gallons/day: total groundwater withdrawal3

$63 million: value of nonfuel mineral production in 20174 22 total disaster declarations, including 9 hurricane, 6 snow, and 5 severe storm disasters (1953-2017)⁶

$8.9 million: NSF GEO grants awarded in 201714

Your State Source for Geoscience Information

Rhode Island Geological Survey
9 E. Alumni Ave, Woodward Hall
Kingston, RI 02881-0816 
401-874-2265

 

Agencies Working on Geoscience Issues in rhode island

Rhode Island Coastal Resources Management Council

The Coastal Resources Management Council is a management agency with regulatory functions. Its primary responsibility is for the preservation, protection, development and where possible the restoration of the coastal areas of the state via the implementation of its integrated and comprehensive coastal management plans and the issuance of permits for work with the coastal zone of the state.

Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management

The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) serves as the chief steward of the state’s natural resources. The DEM's mission put simply is to protect, restore, and promote our environment to ensure Rhode Island remains a wonderful place to live, visit, and raise a family.

Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency

The mission of the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency is to reduce the loss of life and property for the whole community while ensuring that as a state we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all natural, human-caused, and technological hazards.

Rhode Island Geological Survey

The mission of the Rhode Island Geological Survey and the Rhode Island State Geologist is to provide the people of Rhode Island with quality geologic information to facilitate informed decision-making for natural resource management, economic development, conservation planning, and regulation; to provide public assistance; and to promote education.

Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources

The Office of Energy Resources (OER) is Rhode Island’s lead state agency on energy policy and programs. The mission of OER is to lead Rhode Island to a secure, cost-effective, and sustainable energy future.

Rhode Island Water Resources Board

The Rhode Island Water Resources Board is an executive agency of state government charged with managing the proper development, utilization and conservation of water resources. Its primary responsibility is to ensure that sufficient water supply is available for present and future generations, apportioning available water to all areas of the state, if necessary.

University of Rhode Island Environmental Data Center

The Environmental Data Center is the center of technical expertise in GIS for the state of Rhode Island.  The (EDC) is a Geographic Information System (GIS) and spatial data analysis laboratory at the University of Rhode Island. The mission of the EDC is to support the use of contemporary tools of spatial data processing and electronic dissemination in the analysis and distribution of environmental data. 

Case Studies & Factsheets

Cover of AGI Factsheet 2018-004 - Present Day Climate Change

Climate Science 101 Climate is the average of weather conditions over several decades.1,2 Geoscientists monitor modern climate conditions (1880 A.D. to present) in part by taking direct measurements of weather data (i.e., air temperature, rainfall and snowfall, wind speed, cloudiness, and so on...

CI_Factsheet_2017_5_drywellprograms_170906_thumb.JPG

Introduction Dry wells improve stormwater drainage and aquifer recharge by providing a fast, direct route for rainwater to drain deep into underlying sediment and rock. Dry wells are most common in the western U.S. where clay or caliche layers slow down the natural drainage of water into...

GOLI Online Courses

GOLI Course: Ocean Acidification Impacts on Fisheries; Image credit: NOAA
Course Type: GOLI Online Course

As the amount of atmospheric carbon dioxide has increased over recent history, so has the acidity of oceans worldwide. The changing acidity of the ocean has many ecological and economic impacts, one of the most serious being its effects on marine life and fisheries. The impact of ocean...