In urban areas, human activities over time alter natural soil and rock chemical and physical properties through the addition of chemical contaminants, landfilling and disturbance through excavation, sealing and landscaping. In Ireland in 2016, 62.7% of the population lived in urban areas and the trend towards urbanisation is increasing. Most cities have well established monitoring and regulatory systems for air and water, while soils and ground conditions have received comparatively little attention.
Systematic, integrated geoscience data on the urban environment is required for to the protection of human health in urban areas, compliance with environmental legislation, land-use planning, brownfield remediation and urban regeneration. GSI produces urban geoscience data on a project basis, informing the areas of soil geochemistry and contamination, 3D modelling of ground conditions, and assessing ground motions that present a hazard to citizens in the urban environment.