LAWRENCE H. TANNER                                                              


Text Box: Department of Biological Sciences                                  
Professor, Environmental Science Systems                                          
Director, Center for the Study of Environmental Change          
Le Moyne College                                                               
1419 Salt Springs Road                                                  
Syracuse, NY  13214                                                           

(315) 445-4537 (office)                                                      
  University of Massachusetts at Amherst
   Doctor of Philosophy, major: geology, 1990.
   University of Tulsa
   Master of Science, major: geology, 1980.
   Williams College
   Bachelor of Arts, major: geology, cum laude, 1978.
  Le Moyne College (since 2005)
   Professor (2008 - Present)
    Courses taught: Paleobiology of Dinosaurs, Earth: History and Inhabitants,
    Global Ecosystems (Costa Rica; Galapagos; North America), Global Climate Systems, Physical Geology, 
    Earth's Surface, Field Research—Iceland
  Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania (1992-2005)
  Professor (1999 - 2005)
  Colgate University
  Visiting Assistant Professor (1991 - 1992)
   Colby College
   Visiting Assistant Professor (1990 - 1991)
  University of Massachusetts   
   Lecturer (1990, 1991 summers)
  Cities Service Oil and Gas Corp., Tulsa, Oklahoma 
   Production Geologist (1981 - 1986)


Teaching Interests

Most of my courses support the majors in Environmental Science Systems and Environmental Studies.  The former is a uniquely science-based version of Environmental Science (click here for link to the program page).  The latter is a policy oriented version of     the study of environmental issues (click here for link to program page).  Currently I direct both of these programs, and also serve as Director for the Center for the Study of Environmental Change, the hub that links environmental curricula, research and outreach at Le Moyne (click here for link to Center web page).  As a teacher, I encourage students to conduct geological or environmental research projects that involve field work and/or use of our modern laboratories that are equipped with a new JEOL JSM 6510-LV SEM with EDS, a new Bruker D2 Phaser XRD, and a Leco TruSpec C/N.


Research Interests




Studying the Lower Jurassic Whitmore Point Member of the Moenave Formation in the    

  Vermillion Cliffs in the Arizona-Utah border.


 Mesozoic Systems. Much of my work focuses on the paleogeography and      

 paleoclimate of the Mesozoic world (probably a consequence of my childhood

 fascination with dinosaurs).  My current research in this area examines the

 environmental conditions (climatic, atmospheric, etc.) as dinosaurs rose to

 ascendancy in the Late Triassic, the record and causes of extinctions for

 the early Mesozoic, and the global environmental processes responsible for  

 mass extinctions in  general.  Primarily, this research is conducted through

 field studies (sedimentology and stratigraphy) of early Mesozoic formations

 in the Four Corners area and the Canadian Maritimes.



                                                                                                                                                             At the classic K/T boundary section near Gubbio, Italy

 Volcanology. A secondary interest is in volcanology, particularly the recognition of volcanic processes through the study of volcanoclastic deposits.  Most of my work in this area has been concentrated on the volcanoes of southern Italy (Etna, Stromboli and the Iblean Plateau of Sicily), where I have worked for some years with Dr. Sonia Calvari of the INGV in Catania, Sicily;.  We have recently completed work on an introductory text, Volcanoes: Windows on the Earth, is now available from the New Mexico Museum of Natural History Press (click here for information).  I am also deeply interested in the effects on the climate and  environment of large-scale volcanic eruptions, such as those of large igneous provinces.



                                                                                                        On the summit of Etna, looking into the Bocca Nuova crater in 2002.










Our Environment. Finally, I have passionate concern for our Earth

environment.  The realization that modern climate change is already

having a significant impact on the ecology has motivated me to start a

new line of research investigating changes in soil structure and

composition in such diverse locations as Iceland and Costa Rica.



                                    Reindeer grazing in front of Hoffelsjökull in southern Iceland.



Click here for complete CV to see list of about 70 papers and books and 75 or so meeting abstracts.


Selected recent publications

Tanner, L.H., Walker, A.E., Nivison, M.*, Smith, D.L., 2013. Changes in soil composition and floral coverage on a glacial foreland chronosequence, southern Iceland. Open Journal of Soil Science 3, 191-198 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., 2013. A Pennsylvanian tetrapod trackway from Joggins, Nova Scotia: the size continuum of Batrachichnus salamandroides. New Mexico Museum Natural History and Science, Bulletin 60, 427-432 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Lucas, S.G., 2013. Degraded wood in the Upper Triassic Petrified Forest Formation (Chinle Group), northern Arizona: Differentiating fungal rot from arthropod boring. New Mexico Museum Natural History and Science, Bulletin 61, 582-588 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Lucas, S.G., 2013. Isotopic composition of carbonate facies in formations of the Upper Triassic Chinle group, Four Corners area, southwestern United States. New Mexico Museum Natural History and Science, Bulletin 61, 589-596 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H.., 2013. The enigmatic Quaco cobbles, Upper Triassic, Canadian Maritimes: Deformation by seismic shock or tectonics? New Mexico Museum Natural History and Science, Bulletin 61, 577-581 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Lucas, S.G., 2012. Carbonate facies of the Upper Triassic Ojo Huelos Member, San Pedro Arroyo Formation (Chinle Group), southern New Mexico: Paleoclimatic implications. Sedimentary Geology 273-274, 73-90 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Wang, X., Morabito, A.C.*, 2012. Fossil charcoal from the Middle Jurassic of the Ordos Basin, China, and its paleoatmospheric implications. Geoscience Frontiers  doi:10.1016/j.gsf.2011.12.001 (pdf).

Lucas, S.G., Tanner, L.H., Kozur, H.W., Weems, R.E., Heckert, A.B., 2012. The Late Triassic timescale: Age and correlation of the Carnian–Norian boundary. Earth-Science Reviews 114, 1-18 (pdf).

Lucas, S.G., Tanner, L.H., Donohoo-Hurley, L.L., Geissman, J.W., Kozur, H.W., Heckert, A.B., Weems, R.E., 2011. Position of the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and timing of the end-Triassic extinctions on land: Data from the Moenave Formation on the southern Colorado Plateau, USA. Palaeogeography, Palaeoecology, Palaeoclimatology 304, 194-207 (pdf).

Marzoli, A., Jourdan, F. Puffer, J.H., Cuppone, T., Tanner, L.H., Weems, R.E., Bertrand, H., Cirilli, S., Bellieni, G., De Min, A., 2011. Timing and duration of the Central Atlantic magmatic province in the Newark and Culpeper basins, eastern U.S.A. Lithos 122, 175-188 (pdf).


Calvari, S., Tanner, L.H., 2011. The Miocene Costa Giardini diatreme, Iblean Mountains, southern Italy: Model for maar-diatreme formation on a submerged carbonate platform.  Bulletin of Volcanology 73, 557-576 (pdf).


Tanner, L.H. and Khalifa, M.A., 2010, Origin of ferricretes in fluvial-marine deposits of the Lower Cenomanian Bahariya Formation, Bahariya Oasis, Western Desert, Egypt, submitted to Journal of African Earth Sciences 56, 179-189 (pdf).


Tanner, L.H., 2010. Cyclostratigraphic record of the Triassic: a critical examination. In,  Lucas, S.G. (ed.), The Triassic Timescale, Geological Society, London, Special Publication 334, 119-137.


Tanner, L.H., 2010. The Triassic isotope record. The Triassic Timescale, In, Lucas, S.G. (ed.), The Triassic Timescale, Geological Society, London, Special Publication 334, 103-118.


Tanner, L.H. and Lucas, S.G., 2010. Deposition and deformation of fluvial-lacustrine sediments of the Upper Triassic - Lower Jurassic Whitmore Point Member, Moenave Formation, northern Arizona. Sedimentary Geology 223, 180-191 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., 2010. Terrestrial carbonates as indicators of palaeoclimate. In: Alonso-Zarza, A.M. and Tanner, L.H. (Eds), Carbonates in Continental Environments: Geochemistry, Diagenesis and Applications. Elsevier Developments in Sedimentology Series vol. 62., pp. 180-214 (pdf).

Cirilli, S., Marzoli, A., Tanner, L.H.,  Bertrand, H., Buratti, N., Jourdan, F., Bellieni, G., Kontak, D., Renne, R.P., 2009. The onset of CAMP eruptive activity and the Tr-J boundary: Stratigraphic constraints from the Fundy Basin, Nova Scotia. Earth and Planetary Science Letters (pdf).

Jourdan, F., Marzoli A., Bertrande, H., Cirilli, S., Tanner, L.H., Kontak, D.J., McHone, G., Renne, P.R., Bellieni, G., 2009. 40Ar/39Ar ages of CAMP in North America: implications for the Triassic-Jurassic boundary and the 40K decay constant bias. Lithos 110-167-180 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H.,
Kyte, F.T. and Walker, A.E.*, 2008. Multiple Ir anomalies in uppermost Triassic to Jurassic-age strata of the Blomidon Formation, Fundy basin, eastern Canada. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 274, 103-111 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Smith, D.L., and Allan, A.*, 2007. Stomatal response of swordfern to volcanogenic CO2 and SO2 from Kilauea     volcano, Hawaii. Geophysical Research Letters 34: L15807, doi:10.1029/2007GL030320 (pdf).


Lucas, S.G. and Tanner, L.H., 2007. The nonmarine Triassic-Jurassic boundary in the Newark Supergroup of eastern North America. Earth-Science Reviews 84: 1-20 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H. and Lucas, S.G., 2007. The Moenave Formation: Sedimentologic and stratigraphic context of the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in the Four Corners area, southwestern U.S.A. Palaeogeography, Palaeoecology, Palaeoclimatology 244: 111-125 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H. and Lucas, S.G., 2006. Calcretes of the Upper Triassic Chinle Group, Four Corners region, southwestern U.S.A.: climatic implications, in Alonso-Zarza, A.M. and Tanner, L.H., eds., Special Paper 416: Paleoenvironmental Record and Applications of Calcretes and Palustrine Carbonates: Geological Society of America, pp. 53-74 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H.
and Kyte, F.T., 2005. Anomalous iridium enrichment in sediments at the Triassic-Jurassic boundary, Blomidon Formation, Fundy basin, Canada. Earth and Planetary Science Letters 240, 634-641 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H.
, and Calvari, S., 2004. Unusual sedimentary deposits on the SE side of Stromboli volcano, Italy: products of a tsunami caused by the c. 5,000 years b.p. Sciara del Fuoco collapse? Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Resources 137, 329-340 (pdf).

, L.H., Lucas, S.G., and Chapman, M.G., 2004. Assessing the record and causes of Late Triassic extinctions. Earth-Science Reviews 65, 103-139 (pdf).

Tanner, L.H., Hubert, J.F., Coffey, B.P., and McInerney, D.P., 2001. Stability of atmospheric CO2 levels across the Triassic/Jurassic boundary. Nature 411: 675-677 (pdf).

, L.H., 2000. Palustrine/lacustrine and alluvial facies of the Norian Owl Rock Formation (Chinle Group), Four Corners region, southwestern USA: Implications for Late Triassic paleoclimate. Journal of Sedimentary Research, v. 70. No. 5 (pdf).




Even I know that research isn’t everything.  I wouldn’t be doing all the neat stuff without the support of my great family. Emily, now a freshman English major at Fordham Universty, is also a talented pianist. My wife Linda LeMura, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Le Moyne, is a noted researcher in the field of physiology, with a specialty in the study of pediatric obesity.  I’m fortunate to have them accompany me (occasionally) in the field.                                       



My family and I are ardent supporters of the amazingly active and diverse Syracuse cultural scene.  We regularly attend the Syracuse Opera, the Chamber Music series, Syracuse Stage, as well as the many events at Le Moyne College (Gifford Family Theater, Piano in the Panasci, etc.).