Geology 140 - Environmental Geology
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On March 14, you turn both the answers to the questions for Task 1 (Topic Guide), and your answer to Task 2 (Response Paper).


1. The links below should take you straight to the information we need. If you want to read more about landslides, you can find a complete list of Fact Sheets on landslides at (scroll down the page to the fact sheets):

Download each of these Fact Sheets and answer the questions for each:

A. FS 2004-3072 Landslide Types and Processes

What are the differences between a slide and a flow?



Of the different types of flow, which are rapid and catastrophic (and therefore the ones we worry about the most)?


What are the three most important natural causes of landslides?



How do humans help cause landslides (be sure to pay attention to the third paragraph on the first page as well as the list on the second page)?



B. FS 2005-3107 Southern California Landslides — An Overview and

FS 2005-3106 Southern California — Wildfires and Debris Flow

Why is Southern California especially prone to landslides?



What conditions create debris flows?



How do wildfires increase the risk of debris flows? What areas are most susceptible to this hazard?



How do humans help induce landslides in Southern California?



C. Various videos to watch if you choose:

Oakland Hills mudflow

Japanese landslide

Long (8 min.) but amazing (though grainy) video of 1978 collapse of a quick clay in Rissa, Norway

1997 debris flow at Mt. Shasta


2. Response Paper: La Conchita.

Download and read this document: Landslide Hazards at La Conchita, California. There is some technical vocabulary, but just skim through it to figure what what factors contibuted to the landslides in 1995 and 2005.

Read the article and watch the video at the CBS News Web site (click on "Videos show panicked residents...") (Warning: you have to watch a commercial before you get to the video of La Conchita)

Read this news account of the lawsuit: North County Times, Residents of California hamlet hit by 2005 landslide file suits

Ten people died at La Conchita in 2005, including a family of four little girls. Residents filed suits against several players in the La Conchita story, including the county (for allowing residents to live there) and the ranch above the community (for irrigating the hillside).