Earth MRI at MGS
Maryland Geological Survey (MGS) geologists are working in partnership with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Mapping Resources Initiative (Earth MRI) to map mineral resources that are critical to U.S. security and economic prosperity. This work is designed to support the goals of Federal Executive Order 13817 to strengthen and sustain U.S. domestic supply of critical mineral resources.
A few examples of these critical minerals are: rare earth elements (REEs) that we use in cell phones and strong magnets needed for clean energy technology; lithium (Li), used in rechargeable batteries and lightweight aerospace alloy; and manganese (Mn), which is used in the production of steel. The 2022 USGS list of critical minerals can be found here: 2022 USGS critical minerals list.
Earth MRI partners use state-of-the-art geologic mapping and airborne geophysical and topographic (LiDAR) surveys to identify potential buried critical mineral deposits. The Earth MRI program seeks to “improve topographic, geologic, and geophysical mapping of the United States and make the resulting data and metadata electronically accessible”.
The USGS EarthMRI program website can be viewed at: https://www.usgs.gov/special-topic/earthmri
Geochemical data for EarthMRI sites nationwide can be downloaded from: https://www.sciencebase.gov/catalog/item/601963c6d34edf5c66f0d0e5
The following table includes Maryland quadrangles that have been mapped as part of Earth MRI. Any available maps and GIS data for each quadrangle is available for download under the Formats column.
Initiated in 2020, MGS’s Earth MRI program has multiple ongoing projects. Below are some links to relevant pages.
Maryland Geological Survey, October 2022
Maryland Geological Survey
Richard A. Ortt, Jr., Director
David K. Brezinski (410) 554-5526