Abolish Geology?

California is the birthplace of much that is odd. Hurrah!!

But recently, the State Legislature abolished the California State Board for Geologists and Geophysicists and tacked the rump onto the State Board for Professional Engineers and Licensed Surveyors.

Now there is a proposed Bill (SB 624) to abolish the State Rock, Serpentine [ see: 1, 2, 3]. Actually the mineral is serpentine and the rock is serpentinite – shiny, smooth, like serpent scales: often a beautiful rock. It is so beautiful that in Zimbabwe the Shona people carve gorgeous sculpture from serpentinite; we own a piece. Serpenitinite  is intimately associated with the violent tectonic disruptions and the jig-saw puzzle jumble of California: it can be an unpleasant rock from an engineering point of view because it is prone to landsliding and instability in excavations and tunnel construction.  

Serpentinite is also a host for many asbestos minerals and one of those, chrysotile, has been associated with lung cancer. So there are those at the Legislature that seek to ban the State Rock because of the company it keeps.

It would make more sense to Abolish Cigarettes.

No State Board for Geologists. No State Rock. Next step: Abolish Geology?

About Ed Medley

Ed Medley has been on a random walk for over 50 years. Many scribbles and snapshots at this site are from his vagabond transits; others are from his decades of international experience in geological and geotechnical engineering, academia, and mineral exploration prospecting.
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