This column follows up on a pivotal event at the 2006 Annual Convention in Houston, namely the approval by AAPG’s House of Delegates of Bylaws amendments creating two vice presidents -- one for U.S. Sections, one for International Regions.
The amendments passed by an overwhelming margin.
By now all Active AAPG members have been provided, by regular mail and e-mail, with necessary information and materials allowing them to vote on the Constitutional amendment that would add the additional officer to AAPG’s Executive Committee.
Passage of this amendment requires approval by two-thirds of the members voting.
I urge all Active members to approve the Constitutional amendment because it will:
- Improve headquarters services to both U.S. Sections as well as International Regions.
- Allow equitable and long-overdue representation of Region members on AAPG’s Executive Committee.
- Empower emerging Region geological leaders and communities.
- Help implement AAPG’s Strategic Plan.
U.S. members should understand that AAPG’s expanded global presence will increase their international contacts and create additional prospecting and consulting opportunities for American geoscientists.
If Active members approve the constitutional amendment, AAPG can move forward now as a bona fide global geological organization; if they do not, other professional associations will promptly take over AAPG’s global role in Petroleum E&P. It is that simple.
I ask all members for their support on this issue, which is vital to AAPG’s future.
In my March column I left readers in Beijing (Feb. 24-27). On February 28 I flew to Delhi, where I was welcomed as the first AAPG president to visit India in an official capacity.
James Peters, secretary of the Association of Petroleum Geologists (India), and his colleagues introduced me to senior officials of ONGC (the Indian national oil company) and organized several lectures before APG members in Delhi and, later, Mumbai. I was especially pleased to meet a number of independents and consultants who are now working in India.
I sincerely wish that all AAPG members could have the privilege of experiencing the warm and manifest respect that AAPG enjoys among international petroleum geologists.
On March 3, I departed Mumbai for APPEX London 2006, the emerging European exposition where international companies and national petroleum ministries meet to look over prospective deals and discuss current E&P events.
Managed by AAPG, APPEX London was co-sponsored by the UK Department of Trade and Industry, the International Association of Oil and Gas Producers, The Energy Institute and the Geological Society of London.
Steve Veal (AAPG vice president), John Brooks (European Region president), Mike Lakin (European Region VP) and their colleagues knocked themselves out in organizing APPEX London 2006, with excellent results.
It is a pleasure to acknowledge the help of IHS (especially Pete Stark) for its Global Forum, the ABN-AMRO financial institution for their Financial Forum and the International Pavilion in arranging international exhibitors.
We hope APPEX London will become the international equivalent of NAPE.
After APPEX London, John Brooks and I spent a couple of days with Andrew Hurst and his colleagues and students at the University of Aberdeen. We were particularly delighted to have a morning meeting with representatives of the very active community of independents now operating in the North Sea, out of Aberdeen.
On March 11, I returned home to Austin after an absence of four weeks -- but two weeks later I flew to Bahrain for the GEO 2006 conference convened by AAPG, EAGE and Arabian Exhibition Management (AEM), under the patronage of H.H. Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, prime minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain.
More than 1,400 delegates attended about 290 technical papers and poster presentations.
Well-deserved thanks and sincere recognition to Abdulla Al Naim, Saudi Aramco, general chair; Ibrahim Al-Ghambi, technical program chair; Shivaji N. Dasgupta, oral sessions co-chair; Ralph M. Bridle, poster sessions co-chair; Pinar O. Yilmaz, management session co-chair; Robert Ley, short course co-chair; Bob Lindsay, field trip co-chair; Fernando A. Neves, judging co-chair; and Thereza Ward, guest activities co-chair.
Conference Liaison Hassan Al-Husseini served with special distinction and effectiveness in Bahrain. AAPG staff Sandy Hensley and Brenda Cunningham were instrumental in making GEO an outstanding success.
When I began my term as AAPG’s 89th president I was determined to “get out among the members.” By the time June 30 rolls around I will have traveled more than 120,000 miles on AAPG’s behalf, speaking to 18 professional audiences in all six U.S. Sections; 18 professional audiences in three International Regions; and 21 student groups in the United States, Europe, Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions.
I estimate that my AAPG messages during FY 2005-06 reached more than 4,000 professional geoscientists (at least 2,000 of them AAPG members) and more than 1,500 geoscience students.
Optimism is high among petroleum geoscientists for a sustained period of intense global E&P activity. It is gratifying to see smiles on so many faces, and excitement manifested in conversations and in meetings. The world needs our skills and talents, and skilled geoscientists are in short supply.
Reflecting on all this travel, all these meetings and conferences, all these warm welcomes and new friends, I realize that AAPG’s high reputation results from fundamental values that make us unique among professional societies:
- We are a professional organization, not a trade association, and membership requires the approval of our peers.
- We are dedicated to practicing and sharing sound, responsible, state-of-the-art geoscience in the search for energy resources.
- Through the many conferences, exhibitions and publications that we facilitate, we acknowledge and celebrate the necessary marriage of geoscience with enterprise and commerce in the global business of bringing energy to the world.
As president of AAPG, I am enormously proud to represent such an organization.
Two new books for Americans trying to understand where they came from, why they’ve been successful and where they’re going, and for non-Americans trying to understand America.
Best read in the order listed here.
- The Victory of Reason: How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism and Western Success, Rodney Stark, 2005, Random House -- The evolution of capitalism and the political and cultural conventions that nurture and sustain it.
- Who Are We: The Challenges to America’s National Identity, Samuel P. Huntington, 2004, Simon & Schuster -- The four tenets constituting the historical American identity and their fate in the 20th century by a distinguished American scholar.
Read them, you'll like them!