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Lamont Research Professor
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
131 Comer
61 Route 9W - PO Box 1000
(845) 365-8644
(845) 365-8155


Fields of interest: 
Geochemistry, Environmental health

From chemical oceanography and paleoceanography, my interests have turned to the environment and human health. One theme that runs through my on-going projects is that patterns of contamination, e.g. arsenic (As) in well water of across South Asia or lead (Pb) in soil contaminated with mine tailings in the Peruvian Andes, are spatially highly variable. This complicates prediction but also creates opportunities for mitigation once the local distribution of a contaminant has been mapped. My students and I promote more widespread deployment of field kits for testing water and soil, developing new kits when necessary, in order to identify and reduce child exposure to toxins. I particularly enjoy working in teams of earth, public health, and social scientist to increase access to uncontaminated water or reduce the impact of contaminated soil.

List of degrees from highest to lowest:
MIT/WHOI Joint Program in Oceanography
BS Oceanography (cum laude)
University of Washington
BS Chemistry (cum laude)
University of Washington
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Referenced in the Following News Items:

Selected Publications:

Decoupling of As and Fe release to Bangladesh groundwater under reducing conditions. Part 1: Evidence from sediment profiles Horneman, A.; Van Geen, A.; Kent, D. V.; Mathe, P. E.; Zheng, Y.; Dhar, R. K.; O'Connell, S.; Hoque, M. A.; Aziz, Z.; Shamsudduha, M.; Seddique, A. A.; Ahmed, K. M. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta Sep Volume: 68 Issue: 17 p.: 3459-3473 (2004)
On the preservation of laminated sediments along the western margin of North America van Geen, A.; Zheng, Y.; Bernhard, J. M.; Cannariato, K. G.; Carriquiry, J.; Dean, W. E.; Eakins, B. W.; Ortiz, J. D.; Pike, J. Paleoceanography Dec 18 Volume: 18 Issue: 4 p.: - (2003) Doi 10.1029/2003pa000911
A 120 yr record of widespread contamination from mining of the Iberian pyrite belt Van Geen, A.; Adkins, J. F.; Boyle, E. A.; Nelson, C. H.; Palanques, A. Geology Apr Volume: 25 Issue: 4 p.: 291-294 (1997)
Complexation of Carbonate Species at the Goethite Surface - Implications for Adsorption of Metal-Ions in Natural-Waters Van Geen, A.; Robertson, A. P.; Leckie, J. O. Geochimica Et Cosmochimica Acta May Volume: 58 Issue: 9 p.: 2073-2086 (1994)
Evidence from Cd/Ca Ratios in Foraminifera for Greater Upwelling Off California 4,000 Years Ago Van Geen, A.; Luoma, S. N.; Fuller, C. C.; Anima, R.; Clifton, H. E.; Trumbore, S. Nature Jul 2 Volume: 358 Issue: 6381 p.: 54-56 (1992)