Welcome to the Home Page of the IUGS Commission on

“Global Geochemical Baselines”

The Commission on ‘Global Geochemical Baselines’ (CGGB) operates under the auspices of the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS). The mission of the Commission is to prepare a global geochemical database, and its representation in map form, to document the concentration and distribution of chemical elements and species in the Earth’s near-surface environment. This database is urgently needed by decision makers, scientists, researchers, environmental and resource managers throughout the world, and the general public. To reach this goal, the Commission promotes and facilitates the implementation of harmonised sampling, sample preparation, quality control, and analytical protocols in geochemical mapping programmes. Commission activities include the following:

  • Developing partnerships with countries conducting broad-scale geochemical mapping studies;
  • Providing consultation and training in the form of workshops and short courses;
  • Organising periodic international symposia and conferences to foster communication among the geochemical mapping community;
  • Developing criteria for certifying those projects that are acceptable for inclusion in a global database;
  • Acting as a repository for data collected by projects meeting the standards of harmonisation;
  • Preparing complete metadata for the various certified projects; and ultimately
  • Preparing a global geochemical database and atlas.

Further information about the project can be obtained from the Secretary of the Commission Dr. Patrice de Caritat [E-mail: Patrice.DeCaritat@ga.gov.au], Steering Committee members (see Organisation), or the national representatives in each country (see Members).

The Commission organised the third Arthur Darnley Symposium “Mapping the geochemistry of the Earth’s surface at global to local scales“ at the 35th International Geological Congress (IGC) in Cape Town (South Africa) on Tuesday, 30 August 2016 (for more information see “CONFERENCES”), and also a two-day Workshop on “Global-scale Geochemical Mapping” (27-28 August 2016).

New Geochemical Atlases published from 2011 to 2016 (See also PUBLICATIONS):

  1. Geochemical Atlas of Australia
  2. Geochemical Atlas of Cyprus
  3. Geochemical Atlas of Spain
  4. Geochemical Atlas of Agricultural & Grazing land soil of Europe
  5. Geochemical and Mineralogical Data for Soils of the Conterminous United States
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