Major Research Tools

Environment Complete

Full-Text, Index

Database covering the journal literature of environmental sciences, including applicable areas of ecology, energy, geography, pollution & waste management, law, public policy, and urban planning.

GeoRef and GeoRef in Process


Indexes the literature of geology, including journals, books, conference proceedings, maps, and USGS reports.


Full-Text, Index

Full-text of scholarly journals in geology integrated with GeoRef, an index of geological literature.

Google Scholar


Search engine for scholarly materials including journal articles. Be sure to use FullTextFinder to link to Lafayette's resources. Note: if accessing from off-campus, sign in, go to "Settings" and search in the "Library Links" section for "Lafayette." Check "Lafayette College - Lafayette FullTextFinder" and click save to make FullTextFinder appear in search results.

National Geographic Virtual Archive

Coverage: 1888-2015

Full text, full page archive of National Geographic from the first issue through 2015. Pages have been digitized in color, including advertisements, and has features to browse search by image or browse by issue. Complete


Full text access to most of Nature publishing group's journals, including current and archival access to Nature and Scientific American.

Web of Science: Science Citation Index

Coverage: 1955-present

Index covering the journal literature of science and technology. Allows you to search for a topic, an author, or for articles that cite a known author or work.

Other Suggested Research Tools

Annual Reviews

Full-Text, Index

Index coverage: vol. 1 - present; Full-text coverage: 1996-present

Full text of articles reviewing the scholarly literature for a variety of topics in the physical, biomedical, and social sciences.

Center for International Earth Science Information Network

Data, Gateway

A center within Columbia University's Earth Institute, CIESIN provides an extensive gateway to data and other information focusing on human interactions in the environment.  Provides a topic search as well as subject access to spatial and tabular data sets held by CIESIN or hosted on its web site. 

Climate Data Online


Climate Data Online (CDO) provides access to NOAA's archive of global historical weather and climate data in addition to station history information. These data include quality controlled daily, monthly, seasonal, and yearly measurements of temperature, precipitation, wind, and degree days as well as radar data and 30-year Climate Normals.

EM-DAT: The International Disaster Database

Data, Reference

Data on the occurrence and effects of mass disasters in the world from 1900 to present. Includes country-level data on deaths, number of people injured or affected, and economic impact. Free registration required.

Geographic Names Information System


The nation's official repository of domestic geographic names data. Provides location information and maps for almost 2 million physical and cultural geographic features. (Information about foreign geographic feature names can be obtained from the GEOnet Names Server.)

Global Freshwater Biodiversity Atlas

Data, Gateway

The Global Freshwater Biodiversity Atlas is a collection of published and open access freshwater biodiversity maps in addition to a gateway for geographical information and spatial data at different scales. Includes background information, links to publications and data sources.

Global Volcanism Project

From the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, this site serves as a repository for historical and current information on volcanic events.  Includes interactive maps, images, activity reports and extensive indexes to the volcanoes of the world.

IPCC - Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Full-Text, Gateway

Repository for reports and documents on the climate and the environment, produced by IPCC and component groups. 

National Centers for Environmental Information

Data, Gateway

Provides access to wide range of services and sources for geophysical data. Areas include weather and climate, geomagnetism, earth observations from space, space weather and solar events, natural hazards, marine geology and geophysics, and ocean depth data.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Data, Gateway

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is a source of timely and authoritative scientific data and information about climate. Features news, data, maps, and policy information.

National Water Quality Assessment (NAWQA) Program


Assesses more than 50 river basin and aquifer systems. Includes data, summary reports, maps, and press releases. Search by state, basin, or topic such as pesticides, ecology, and urbanization.

Oxford Encyclopedia of the History of American Science, Medicine, and Technology

Full-Text, Reference

Articles covering key individuals, institutions, and organizations responsible for major developments in science, medicine and technology in the U.S. as well as the concepts, practices, and processes underlying these developments.

Pennsylvania Geology


Materials relating to the geology and water resources of Pennsylvania from the PA Geological Survey, U.S.G.S., and others. Includes materials from the second (1874-1889), third (1899-1919), and fourth (1919-present) geological surveys of Pennsylvania.

U.S. Climate Resilience Map


Interactive map that strives to build the resilience of people and communities across the United States through the clear identification of climate risks and social vulnerabilities and the corresponding solutions to address them. Refine by state or county and view by different layers of risk such as heat, drought, flooding, wildfires, and increased precipitation.

USGS Earthquake Hazards Program

Data, Gateway

Provides information on location and size of most earthquakes worldwide. Includes historical information on the bigger quakes and a "near real-time earthquake list" for those who want to follow current seismicity.

USGS Landslide Hazards

Data, Gateway

Useful data and links on landslides, as well as how they relate to other geologic processes and hazards.

USGS Map Locator

Visual Resource

Downloadable U.S. topographic maps from the USGS.

Volcano World

Reference, Visual Resource

Information and images of volcanoes of the world. Includes updates on current volcanic activity. From Oregon State University.