PG&E Moves To Auction Off Eel River Dams Amid Growing Seismic Safety Concerns

Geologic Map Gravelly Valley

Utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) began seeking potential buyers today for two aging dams on the upper Eel River, even as new questions emerge about the vulnerability of the larger dam to seismic shocks. A conservation group working to remove the dams released a technical analysis today that identifies an active landslide above the … Read more

Oroville Disaster May Have Been Caused by Weak Soil Under Spillway

Portions of Oroville Dam’s damaged spillway may have been built atop highly weathered rock, geologists say, a type vulnerable to erosion during the weeks of rain that led up to the disaster. THE DESTRUCTION OF Oroville Dam’s main spillway in February likely occurred because it was built on highly erodible rock, according to several experts interviewed … Read more

Imagery Unlocks an Unexpected View of California’s Drought

Climate had little to do with the research, but it emerged as a telling factor after UO geologist Joshua Roering and postdoctoral researcher Georgie Bennett found themselves confused by new landslide data they had gathered. In the project, Bennett had merged data from on-the-ground measurements, aerial photography, satellite imagery and satellite-radar imaging of 98 landslide … Read more