Geoscience professor Brenda J. Buck will present “An Update on Naturally-Occuring Asbestos in Southern Nevada” at noon Oct. 27.
Clark County has the distinction of being both the most arid and the most populous county in Nevada. Also, within the borders of Clark County resides naturally-occurring asbestos. This unfortunate combination can lead to greater human exposures to this type of asbestos. Inhalation is the primary mechanism by which people are exposed. Natural wind erosion combined with anthropogenic activities such as off-road driving, construction, hiking, and horseback riding increase the potential for asbestos to become airborne, and therefore result in human exposures. The sources of the amphibole asbestos are plutonic and metamorphic rocks. Wind and water erosion, transport, and deposition through time have resulted in widespread contamination of the surrounding soils and sediments.
Buck is a medical geologist, and will present an update on this research, how it started, and where we are today.