Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wrap up of AASG annual meeting

The Association of American State Geologists (AASG) convened its 102nd annual meeting in New Brunswick, New Jersey on June 27- July 1. The meeting was hosted by Karl Muessig, state geologist and director of the New Jersey Geological Survey. The New Jersey Geological Survey was concurrently celebrating its 175th year of service to the state, making it one of the oldest state geological surveys in the U.S.

AASG elected its officers for 2010-11, and include: Past president - David Wunsch (NH); President - Jim Cobb (KY); President-elect - Vicki McConnell (OR); Vice president - Harvey Thorleifson (MN); Secretary - Robert Swenson (AK); and Treasurer - Jon Arthur (FL). These officers constitute AASG’s executive committee and will serve a one-year term that begins on July 1, 2010. Other elected officers for the association are Historian - Bill Kelly (NY); Editor - Mike Hohn (WV); and Statistician - Rick Allis (UT).

The AASG, founded in 1908, represents the chief executives of the geologic surveys or bureaus of the 50 states and Puerto Rico. Cumulatively, state geological surveys employ 2,000 earth scientists and engineers and have a combined annual budget of $230 million, making state geological surveys one of the largest geologic enterprises in the U.S. A 2010 survey of affiliations and responsibilities of state geological surveys shows that 35 are state agencies and 16 are university departments. The missions of state surveys vary from state to state but all state surveys conduct geological research, 14 have regulatory responsibilities, 20 manage core and sample collections, 10 do seismic monitoring, 15 maintain groundwater records and monitoring, and 15 maintain oil & gas drilling records. In geologic specialties all state surveys do public outreach, 49 do geologic data preservation, 49 do geologic mapping, 46 do geologic hazards, 45 do mineral resources, and 40 do fossil fuels. More than half of the 51 state surveys are currently doing groundwater, carbon sequestration, and environmental geology research. Many state surveys have responsibilities and expertise not listed here but are individual to each state. Get to know your state geological survey there is something there for everybody.

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