It’s been another tumultuous year for AAPG – with the termination of merger talks with the Society of Petroleum Engineers being probably the most substantive event for the Association overall. Whether you were pro-merger or against it, we now have to chart a course to determine the future of the Association. There are many issues that need to be addressed, and if you have new ideas for how to do so, please consider volunteering and getting more involved with AAPG or its divisions, regions and sections. Without Member engagement, we have little hope of sustaining AAPG amid the ongoing declines in membership and revenues that have and will continue to lead to staff and service reductions.
Acknowledgements, Passing the Baton
It has been a real honor to serve as the president of the Energy Minerals Division. I want to again thank the members of EMD leadership for their contributions to the Division this year. My fellow elected officers, including past President Ursula Hammes, President-elect Mike Bingle-Davis, Secretary Claudia Hackbarth and Vice President Randy Blood, have remained engaged and enthusiastic throughout this term, facilitating completion of the events and new initiatives we’ve developed over the last year. I am also thankful to our other volunteers in EMD leadership, including the commodity committee chairpersons who continue to recruit members and work to provide information and learning opportunities to the AAPG and EMD membership. We are also very lucky to have a diverse array of regional and section councilors to call upon.
Finally, I want to give a special acknowledgement to Diane Keim at AAPG headquarters, without whom I don’t think we’d get anything done and far too many things would fall through the cracks. Susan Nash, AAPG’s director of innovation and emerging science/technology, has also been a great sounding board for ideas and a collaborator on a number of EMD activities. Many thanks to her for all of her contributions to AAPG.
Though I don’t know who will be serving alongside President-elect Mike Bingle-Davis in the 2022-23 term, I know EMD will be in good hands and that Mike will do a great job leading the Division. Mike has been willing to go above and beyond on a number of EMD efforts over the last two years, first as vice president and then as president-elect, so I have no doubt he’ll have a productive term as EMD president.
What’s Next from EMD
EMD has several projects in various stages of development that will be completed in the last months of this term or will continue into 2022-23. There are also a few initiatives we haven’t gotten around to really starting yet, and it’s my hope that we’ll get them going and come up with some new ideas along the way.
One big development is the continued transition of EMD materials to the AAPG Wiki. Lucy Ko from the Tight Oil and Gas Committee has already started posting material on the Wiki and in the future this might become the default repository for EMD commodity information for all of our committees. This will take some of the burden off the website staff and makes it possible to get updates online faster. We also plan to continue disseminating EMD updates through quarterly email newsletters to reach members directly.
Though the technical program is still being developed, I anticipate a robust EMD presence at the 2022 International Meeting for Applied Geoscience and Energy in Houston this summer. In addition to technical sessions on tight oil and gas, critical minerals and other commodity committee related content, we have a great speaker lined up for the joint Division of Environmental Geosciences-EMD Luncheon and a field trip planned by Energy Economics and Technology committee chairs Jeremy Platt and Dieter Beike to the Mont Belvieu Natural Gas Liquids storage hub. Be on the lookout for information about these EMD activities at IMAGE in the coming months.
Commodity committee activities are also being developed for other upcoming AAPG meetings. A second all-day Geothermal Short Course is planned for the Unconventional Resources Technology Conference in Houston this June, with several new speakers and returning contributors, including Organizing Committee members Ken Wisian and Malcolm Ross. We also anticipate updated reports from several commodity committees this summer, along with an inaugural report from the new Hydrogen Resources and Storage Committee led by Geoff Ellis.
Again, it’s been a wild year for the world and for AAPG. Just as the worldwide COVID pandemic seemed to be sufficiently under control for all of us to start transitioning into some semblance of a “new normal,” another globe-affecting event kicked off, devastating the lives of millions in Ukraine and contributing to further turmoil in world energy and commodity markets.
There are obviously many important events and circumstances in our personal and professional lives and the world that deplete our mental resources. But I urge all of you who can to consider contributing some of your time to continue making AAPG relevant and responsive to the needs of the energy sector, society and its members. Without you and your time, energy and ideas, there is no AAPG. If the Association is going to endure, especially through these trying times, it will be because its Members made the effort.
Visit the EMD webpage for more information about our committees, activities and upcoming events. You can also find us on YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.