A long winter / late spring extended the seismic season on the prairies, and caused much elevator chatter about the frequent April snow showers in Calgary. Record cold in parts of Ontario in early April were followed by floods in cottage country. It is unpredictable.
By the time this issue of the RECORDER goes to press, the BC election will have taken place. The results may have a national impact. The Alberta Single Regulator framework is set to start on Keystone next month. A White House decision may happen as early as August. Pundits will predict, but the outcomes will speak for themselves and it probably won’t be dull. Coffee conversations I have, sometimes stray towards a question that is phrased something like this: “When did we last have a ‘normal’ year?” Who knows, change is a constant. Plus ça change plus c'est la même chose.
In terms of change, there are a few new CSEG events that may be of interest. The Microseismic Users Group has initiated plans for MUG’s Microseismic Technology Days. From its inception, the MUG has had a non-commercial mandate. While understandable, that mandate has limited MUG offerings. Accordingly, MUG is planning the Technology Days event in order to let the commercial providers of microseismic services showcase the evolution of their individual and collective capacity. Microseismic remains a very dynamic aspect of geophysics, and the crucible of commercial competition is driving rapid improvements. At time of writing, the MUG-MTD had passed through the ‘notional’ stage and was concrete enough to have identified a venue and dates. Preliminary plans called for a downtown Calgary venue and dates in mid June. By the time this goes to press those details will probably be announced. If you have missed them, please contact the CSEG office.
Another event to look out for is one being considered by the Chief Geophysicists Forum’s Microseismic subcommittee. The CGF Subcommittee has begun to consider an Induced Seismicity Forum to be run next fall. Watch for details in the coming weeks and months. Induced seismicity has been a subject of concern. The US National Academy of Sciences has conducted a study and has issued a report. The Royal Society has done the same. BC’s OGC has conducted a study using sensors installed by industry in the Horn River Basin (a summary talk was given at MUG last year). Subsequently Geo Science BC has funded the installation of a sensor array in that general area. The Council of Canadian Academies has been asked by the Federal Government to investigate Shale Gas. Information can be found at http://www.scienceadvice.ca/en/assessments/in-progress/shale-gas.aspx. In 2012 the CSEG executive sent a letter to the CCA indicating our willingness to connect the Council’s project team to qualified CSEG members should the Council so wish. The Council’s Expert Panel will hold its final meeting in June 2013.
The Canadian Federation of Earth Sciences, an umbrella organization of some 12 Canadian member societies including the CSEG, has signed a publishing contract for the production of a ‘popular’ book on the geology of Canada entitled Four Billion Years and Counting. I’ve been given a look at the ‘final’ text and it looks excellent. The book began as a project associated with the International Year of Planet Earth (2008). The book will sell for a modest price, around $40 if memory serves, and all figures and photographs in the book will be available online in an effort to foster public understanding of earth sciences. More information is available at http://www.earthsciencescanada.com/4by/. Sponsors include NEXEN, corporately, and individual chapter sponsors, some of whom are long time CSEG members.
GeoConvention has now concluded. As I write this, however, it was to take place two weeks in the future. Presumably it will have been an enriching experience. Matt Hall’s experimental “Un-session” is notable to me, in a pre-convention sense at least. Our best wishes go to the winners of Challenge Bowl. They have big shoes to fill at the 2013 SEG Challenge Bowl competition: at the 2012 SEG a Canadian team took first prize. That winning team wasn’t even the team that won at GeoConvention. US visa problems prevented the 2012 GeoConvention team from attending the SEG event in Las Vegas, so a ‘pick up’ team competed in its place. It was like science competition street hockey, with the visa situation being the car followed by a notably successful ‘game on’.
GeoConvention is on the way to a more permanent footing, enabled for growth by a new ‘structure’ that has GeoConvention operated by the GeoConvention Partnership whose general partners are the CSEG, CSPG, and CWLS. The structure should provide GeoConvention additional continuity, competitiveness, and a platform for continued growth and success. The three societies planned a signing ceremony of sorts at GeoConvention.
Signing ceremonies have been frequent in 2013. Rob Kendall signed the cooperative MOU with the EAGE in March, and will sign a similar cooperative MOU with the SEG in June – oddly enough at the EAGE Conference in London. Part of those agreements is booth space for societies at each other’s annual conventions. SEG and EAGE were planning to attend GeoConvention. CSEG is planning to attend the SEG Convention in Houston.
CSEG rebranding continues. The web site is up and running, and has been since our March AGM, but we continue to ferret out non-functional bits. Please be patient with the staff and the Director(s) of Communication as we work towards completion.
The fall technical Luncheon Schedule is set through November, featuring a couple of touring SEG speakers, including the SEG Distinguished Lecturer. The CSEG Distinguished Lecture series will be featured at a later Luncheon date.
Summer will officially arrive next month. If it means a slightly less hectic work day – enjoy it. If it means the exact same work day – enjoy it. Stay well, stay safe and have fun – always.