National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program


The National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program (NGGDPP) was created by the 109th Congress in the Energy Policy Act of 2005, intended to ensure jobs for the future with secure, affordable, and reliable energy. The NGGDPP is directed to preserve the geological history of the United States. By funding the preservation of geoscientific samples and data and participation in collaborative efforts focusing on technology and data management, the NGGDPP is advancing the agenda for data preservation and collections management and creating guiding principles for the scientific community in geoscience record keeping. Preservation of geoscience data and materials in the United States has traditionally been the responsibility of a set of disparate facilities and programs. Previous to the NGGDPP, there has been no national standards, procedures, and protocols for the collections and minimal coordination between responsible parties. Although some local collection facilities are excellent, more commonly, data and materials reside in inadequately cataloged, overfilled, and disorganized storage areas that were not designed as data repositories. Many Federal and State geological repositories are at or near capacity and unable to accept additional materials.

The NGGDPP, administered by the U.S. Geological Survey, comprises State geological surveys and agencies within the Department of Interior (DOI) that maintain geological and geophysical data and samples. Together, these groups are working to:

  • Inventory collections of materials and data that are under the purview of State geological surveys and DOI agencies to identify preservation and data-rescue needs.
  • Populate and advance the National Digital Catalog.
  • Develop guidelines for distribution of Program funds and establish priorities for Program activities.
  • Establish minimum standards, procedures, and protocols for preserving and archiving collections of geological and geophysical materials and data

The focus of NGGDPP activities is currently limited to State geological surveys that elect to participate and agencies with the DOI. However, valuable collections exist elsewhere and partnerships with industry and academia are encouraged to preserve additional archival material.

Implementation Plan for the National Geological and Geophysical Data Preservation Program (October 10, 2006)