Geology Matters - Businesses

Potential Geologic Issues for Businesses

Businesses come in all sizes – the one-person operation all the way to large corporations.  Some businesses are in the business of finding and supplying geologic raw materials (ex. crushed stone, petroleum products, and minerals for industrial purposes).  Every business either directly uses raw materials or make use of raw materials in one way or another.  Read more about minerals and geologic raw materials.

The geology that underlies your place of business may have a big impact on the short and long-term maintenance of buildings and structures.  A quality structure must be constructed on good solid ground.  To ensure the ground is suitable for construction or to ensure appropriate engineering measures have been taken into consideration, the nature of the soil and underlying geologic material must be understood.

Potential geologic issues and/or hazards encountered in North Carolina can include the following:

Ground collapse: old mines and prospects and sinkholes 

Slope movements and landslides

Rippable vs non-rippable earth material

Expansive soils (shrink swell clays)

Acid-producing rock

Groundwater – quantity and quality with respect to geology

Radon in air and groundwater – The Geologic Link

Arsenic - Naturally occurring Arsenic in groundwater 


Coastal Hazards

When the Ground Moves – A Citizen’s Guide to Geologic Hazards in North Carolina  - NC Geological Survey Informational Circular 32 provides a simple review of some of the geologic hazards that can be encountered in North Carolina. 

A paper titled - Geoscience Education for Realtors, Appraisers, Home Inspectors, and Homeowners, provides an overview of geologic hazards in the Colorado Front Range area and their potential to impact property values.  These same concepts can be applied to geologic hazards and possible impact on home sites in North Carolina.  Link to abstract of paper: