Media advisory 5 - Joint Assembly: final press conference schedule

05/09/05

Contents:

1. Final press conference schedule
2. Field trip update
3. Attention PIOs: Sending press releases to Joint Assembly
4. News Media registration eligibility information
5. News Media Registration Form
6. Who's coming

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Note: This advisory does not repeat important information in Media Advisories 1-4.

Media Advisory 1:
The four sponsoring organizations of Joint Assembly; important visa regulations for non-U.S. journalists covering the meeting. See http://www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/prrl0503.html

Media Advisory 2:
Hotel rooms at special Joint Assembly rates are now available; Press field trip planned. See http://www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/prrl0508.html

Media Advisory 3: Abstracts and sessions online; Press conferences planned. See http://www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/prrl0510.html

Media Advisory 4:
Flood control field trip; Press Room information; Sullivan and Perlman Awards presented. See http://www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/prrl0512.html

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1. Final press conference schedule

The following press conferences are planned, with the listed participants, as of the date of this message. As always, it is subject to change: press conferences may be added or dropped; participants may change, emphasis may change. Any changes will be announced in the Press Room at Joint Assembly.

All press conferences take place in Room 236, Morial Convention Center, in New Orleans.

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Monday, 23 May
0900h

Overview of Joint Assembly

There is so much news at Joint Assembly that press conferences can just provide a sampling of the new research being reported here. Reporters are encouraged to attend sessions and lectures, but finding the ones you want can be a problem. The person with the best broad view of all that is happening at Joint Assembly is Rob van der Hilst, the chair of the program committee that organized the sessions. He will provide some tips on newsworthy sessions that are not the subject of press conferences. Participant:

  • Rob van der Hilst, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S.A; Chair, Joint Assembly Program Committee.

*****

Monday, 23 May
1200h

Saturn's Magnetosphere: Like Earth's, Like Jupiter's, or Like 25 Years Ago?

The Cassini spacecraft's highly choreographed dance around Saturn is providing interesting results about the big bubble surrounding the planet, generally know as the magnetosphere. Since reaching Saturn orbit on 30 June 2004, Cassini has provided more information on Saturn's magnetosphere than was available from the Voyager flybys. Saturn's magnetosphere is more dynamic than Jupiter's and very different from Earth's. If you could snap a family portrait of the magnetospheres of Earth, Jupiter, and Saturn, Saturn would be the middle child.

Participants:

  • Michele Dougherty, Principal Investigator, Cassini Magnetometer; Professor, Imperial College, London, United Kingdom;
  • Donald G. Mitchell, Scientist, Cassini Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland, USA;
  • Frank Crary, Deputy Principal Investigator, Science Operations, Cassini Plasma Spectrometer; Physicist, Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas, USA;
  • William Kurth, Deputy Principal Investigator, Cassini Radio and Plasma Wave Science Instrument; Research Scientist, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, USA.

Sessions SM11A/SM12A/SM13A

*****

Monday, 23 May 1300h

Human Activities Damaging Aquatic Habitats and Their Ability to Process Pollutants

The gradual changes in landscapes and streams over the last century and a half, along with increased nutrient loads in the last half of the 20th century, are paralleled by changes in the Gulf of Mexico, where widespread, severe seasonal hypoxia (oxygen deficiency) now occurs. Headwater streams retain nutrients and reduce enrichment of downstream systems, but their significance is often underestimated. The functioning of streams is strongly influenced by physical conditions, including the size and timing of storms, light availability, the composition of bottom sediments, and the pathways through the surrounding watershed and within the stream channel. Recent advances in our understanding of how physical and chemical factors influence biological communities and processes in streams provide a basis for managing landscape-level issues, such as nutrient enrichment of freshwater and coastal systems.

Participants:

  • Patrick Joseph Mulholland, Distinguished Research Staff Member, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA;
  • David L. Strayer, Senior Scientist, Institute of Ecosystem Studies, Millbrook, New York, USA;
  • Nancy N. Rabalais, Professor, Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium, Cocodrie, Louisiana, USA;
  • Matt Whiles, Associate Professor of Zoology, Department of Zoology, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Illinois, USA.

Sessions NB11A/NB12A

*****

Tuesday, 24 May
0900h

Another First!: Voyager 1 Reaches the Edge of the Solar System

Voyager 1 has become the first spacecraft to enter the heliosheath, the last step before it leaves the solar system. On 17 December 2004, when Voyager 1 was 94 times Earth's distance from the Sun, energetic particle beams became steady in strength, the direction of these beams nearly reversed, and the magnetic field strength jumped. New radio waves were observed. These data suggest that Voyager had entered an unexplored region of space, the heliosheath. The solar wind creates a small bubble, the heliosphere, in the interstellar medium, the material between stars. The boundary of this bubble is the heliopause, which can be considered the edge of our solar system. The solar wind is supersonic, so before this wind reaches the heliopause it must go through a shock, which causes it to slow down. This region of slower flow is called the heliosheath. Voyager scientists will discuss why they conclude that the spacecraft has reached the heliosheath, as well as some puzzling and unexpected aspects of these observations, and predict what Voyager will see in this new and unexplored region of space.

Participants:

  • Edward C. Stone, Downs Laboratory , California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA;
  • Donald A. Gurnett, Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, USA;
  • Alan Coffman Cummings, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA;
  • Leonard F. Burlaga, Laboratory for Solar and Space Physics, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, USA.

Sessions SH22A/SH23A

*****

Tuesday, 24 May
1000h

Strongest Ground-level Solar Flare Since 1956 Sheds Light on Space Hazards

On 20 January 2005, the Sun emitted the strongest burst of ionizing radiation in nearly 50 years. The event was captured by several satellites, including SOHO, TRACE, RHESSI, CORIOLIS, and ACE. The data show surprising science and have alarming implications for the importance and difficulty of space weather prediction.

Participants:

  • Richard Nightingale, Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center, Palo Alto, California, USA;
  • Robert Lin, Space Sciences Laboratory, University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, California, USA;
  • Bernard Jackson, Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA;
  • Richard Mewaldt, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA.

Sessions: SP21A/SP23B/SP41C/SP42A/SP51C/SP52A

*****

Tuesday, 24 May 1100h

Mitigating the Impact of Large, Explosive Volcanic Eruptions

Volcanism, especially large eruptions, represents one the greatest natural hazards. In densely populated areas, such as Naples, Italy, the hazard converts to very high risk, in which several million people are exposed to the most explosive kinds of volcanic activity. At this press conference, an international group of scientists will present novel research on volcano monitoring, eruption forecasting, and hazard modeling. They will show new models of volcano dynamics and pre-eruptive behavior, based on recent eruptions at Soufriere Hills on Monserrat and Mt. St. Helens in Washington State, as well as unrest at the large Campi Flegrei caldera in Italy, where an eruptive event could already be in preparation. They will also show the results of new, multidisciplinary research, aimed at understanding and mitigating the risk in the most dangerous volcanic area on Earth.

Participants:

  • Giuseppe Mastrolorenzo, Senior Researcher, Istituto Nazionale Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV), Naples, Italy;
  • Giuseppe De Natale, Research Director, Volcano-Physics Group, Istituto Nazionale Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV), Naples, Italy;
  • David M. Pyle, Senior Lecturer Academic, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, United Kingdom;
  • Michael Poland, Research Geophysicist, U.S. Geological Survey - Hawaii Volcano Observatory, Hawaii National Park, Hawaii, USA;
  • Glen S. Mattioli, Associate Professor of Geosciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA.

Sessions: V23A/V23B/V33A/V34A

*****

Tuesday, 24 May
1400h

Mars Exploration Rovers

NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has been examining an outcrop of layered bedrock, the most extensive one Spirit has found in more than 15 months of field work inside Gusev Crater. Meanwhile, Opportunity has reached the edge of a landscape called the "Etched Terrain," which orbital images show to be intriguingly different from anything the rover has crossed previously. Rover team members will present the latest scientific findings from both missions and will report on the condition of these robots after more than a year of bonus-time extended work assignments on Mars.

Participants:

  • Steve Squyres, Principal Investigator, Mars Exploration Rovers; Professor, Department of Astronomy, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, USA;
  • Jim Erickson, Project Manager, Mars Exploration Rovers, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA;
  • Richard V. Morris, NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas, USA.

Session: P31A

*****

Wednesday, 25 May
0900h

Regional and Coastal Ocean Observing Systems along the U. S. Southern Border

Global and coastal ocean communities have been developing a systematic approach to sustained ocean observations. Recently, the U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy recommended creation of an Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS), to which the Administration is committed. Observing systems address a broad range of coastal issues and utilize a remarkable suite of technologies, including many types of autonomous ocean sensors, sophisticated numerical models, and leading-edge information management systems. These technologies are being used to examine the character and variability of the coastal ocean from Alta and Baja California to the Gulf Coast and on to Florida and the Carolinas. New partnerships between academics, government agencies, and the private sector are critical to this development, and provide a new model for developing operational capabilities from research results.

Participants:

  • John Orcutt, Deputy Director, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and Director, UCSD Center for Earth Observations and Applications, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA; President, AGU;
  • Norman L. Guinasso, Jr., Adjunct Professor of Oceanography and Interim Director, Geochemical and Environmental Research Group, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, USA;
  • Harvey Seim, Associate Professor of Marine Science, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.

Sessions OS32A/OS43A

*****

Wednesday, 25 May
1500h The International Polar Year Takes Shape

The International Polar Year 2007-2008 (IPY) will be the largest internationally-coordinated science research endeavor in the fifty years since the International Geophysical Year. The large-scale environmental changes currently observed in the polar regions are significant, accelerating, and globally connected. Scientists, national committees, and research agencies from many nations around the world, including U.S., U.K., Russia, China, Japan, and Korea, along with many others, are actively involved in shaping the agenda for societally-relevant research. Representatives from the International Council of Scientific Unions-World Meteorological Organization Committee, the U.S. National Committee, and the U.S. Geological survey will discuss late-breaking news on planning for the IPY.

Participants:

  • Michel Beland, ICSU-WMO International IPY Committee; Meteorological Service of Canada, Dorval, Quebec, Canada;
  • Mary R. Albert, Chair of the US National Committee for the International Polar Year; Geophysical Sciences Division, Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory, U.S. Army, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA; Adjunct Professor, Thayer School of Engineering, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA;
  • Patrick Leahy, Associate Director for Geology, U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia, USA.

Sessions: C41A/C42A

*****

Special Three-part Press Conference on the Sumatra Earthquakes and Tsunami and Their Policy Implications

*****

Thursday, 26 May
0900h

The December 2004 and March 2005 Sumatra Earthquakes

In the past six months the Sunda Trench experienced the two largest earthquakes in 40 years and the largest quakes to occur since the advent of modern digital measurement technology. The sheer size of the 2004 Sumatra-Andaman quake has made it hard to characterize in detail, e.g., where and how rapidly did Earth's tectonic plates scrape past each other on that terrifying day? The panelists will offer information from their latest research on how earthquake aftershock patterns reveal where the Sunda Trench moved and where it might rupture in the future, how GPS measurements indicate sliding and buckling of the tectonic plates, how seismometers and superconducting gravimeters reveal our planet vibrating weeks and months after the two great earthquakes, and whether we can observe the predicted earthquake-induced changes to Earth's rotation rate.

Participants:

  • Jeffrey Park, Professor of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA;
  • Meredith Nettles, Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA;
  • Yehuda Bock, Research Geodesist and Senior Lecturer, Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California - San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA;
  • Richard Gross, Geophysicist, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California, USA.

Sessions: U43A/U44A/U51A/U52A/U53A/U54A

*****

Thursday, 26 May
1000h

The 26 December 2004 Sumatra-Andaman Tsunami

After one of the most lethal natural disasters in recorded history, with an estimated death toll approaching 300,000, scientists are studying the 2004 Indian-Ocean tsunami with a nervous eye toward the future. What factors contributed to its severity and its distant reach? To what extent can such an event be predicted? How useful would a tsunami warning system be for near-seismic coastal regions and for more distant regions? Each panelist has grappled with scientific observations related to these questions, offering insight on how tsunami are generated by earthquakes, why the 28 March 2005 Northern Sumatra earthquake (M=8.7) generated a small tsunami compared with the 2004 event, what tsunami hazard Australia may face from earthquakes further southeast along the Sunda trench, and how continuous GPS measurements might complement seismometer data in a tsunami warning system.

Participants:

  • Susan Bilek, Assistant Professor of Geophysics, Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, Socorro, New Mexico, USA;
  • Phil Cummins, Project Leader, Earthquake Hazard & Neotectonics, Geohazards Division, Geoscience Australia, Canberra, ACT, Australia;
  • Emile Okal, Professor, Department of Geological Sciences, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USA;
  • Jeff Freymueller, Professor, Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of Alaska, Fairbanks, Alaska, USA;
  • Joydeep Bhattacharyya, Senior Research Scientist, BBN Technologies, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Sessions: U43A/U44A/U51A/U52A/U53A/U54A

*****

Thursday, 26 May 1100h

The Sumatran Earthquake and Tsunami: Policy Implications

The 26 December Indian Ocean tsunami, responsible for 300,000 deaths, was the worst in world history and dwarfs most natural disasters in modern times. The scope of losses to life, property, and the body politic demand a new approach to monitoring Earth. This was the first great earthquake recorded on-scale and in near-real-time by modern seismographs, and other technologies including the global positioning system (GPS), consumer video recorders, extensive satellite coverage, and global satellite and Internet communications were not even available during the 1964 Alaska earthquake and attendant tsunami. These new, exponentially growing technologies provide tools necessary to build a global environmental monitoring system today and the realization of U.S. Administration and G-8 plans for a Global Earth Observing System of Systems (GEOSS). Global natural hazards include not only earthquakes, tsunami and volcanoes, but rising sea level, the spread of disease in response to manmade modifications of ecologies, tornadoes, monsoons, drought, and hurricanes. Hurdles to progress are plentiful and include national and international embargoes on near-real-time access to data. Natural disasters will likely contribute more to loss of life, destruction of national economies, and spread of disease than any possible terrorist activities in coming decades. A reorientation in political thinking and priorities is essential, if we are to deal effectively with the rapidly growing global population and economic growth characteristic of today's world.

Participant

  • John Orcutt, Deputy Director, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and Director, UCSD Center for Earth Observations and Applications, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California San Diego, La Jolla, California, USA; President, AGU.
Session U45A

*****

Thursday, 26 May
1400h

Air Pollution in a Future Climate Mitigation Agreement

Panelists will discuss scientific and policy issues associated with including short-lived greenhouse gases and aerosols in a future climate agreement. Air pollutants such as tropospheric ozone and particulate matter contribute to climate change, as well as adversely impacting human health and agriculture. Currently, no binding targets have been set as part of a climate agreement for reducing the emissions of these chemicals. Reducing emissions of certain air pollutants can both benefit public health and mitigate climate change. Care must be taken, however, in deciding how much credit for climate change mitigation should be given for reducing emissions of air pollutants, because some air pollutants contribute to warming and others to cooling. In addition, when and where the air pollutants are emitted can influence their impact on climate.

Participants:

  • Denise Mauzerall, Assistant Professor, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, USA;
  • James Hansen, Director, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York, New York, USA;
  • Jan S. Fuglestvedt, Research Director, Center for International Climate and Environmental Research Oslo (CICERO), Oslo, Norway.

Sessions A51B/A52B

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2. Field trip update

Plans for the field trip are as stated in Media Advisory 4: http://www.agu.org/sci_soc/prrl/prrl0512.html#2 There is room for additional participants.

New: Please meet at the entrance to the Convention Center (900 Convention Center Boulevard) at 0815h on Sunday, 22 May. We will move to the Press Briefing Room (Room 236) for an introductory talk, prior to beginning our tour.

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3. Attention PIOs: Sending press releases to Joint Assembly

Public information officers are encouraged to work with scientists presenting research at Joint Assembly to prepare press releases and handouts, whether or not the scientists are participating in press conferences. All such materials are displayed in the Press Room from the time they are received until Friday afternoon, 27 May.

We suggest around 15 copies of printed materials and up to three copies of any videos, in Beta format, for television stations. They should be sent to arrive 20-26 May, the earlier within this period the better.

Please send press releases, etc., to this address only:

Morial Convention Center
AGU Conference - Harvey Leifert
900 Convention Center Boulevard
Press Room--Room 235
New Orleans, LA 70130
PLEASE DELIVER TO REAR OF EXHIBIT HALL B

Phone number (504) 670-7020

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4. News Media registration eligibility information

News Media registrants receive a badge that provides access to any of the scientific sessions of the meeting, as well as to the Press Room and Briefing Room. No one will be admitted without a valid badge.

Eligibility for press registration is limited to the following persons:

  • Working press employed by bona fide news media: must present a press card, business card, or letter of introduction from an editor of a recognized publication.
  • Freelance science writers: must present a current membership card from NASW, a regional affiliate of NASW, CSWA, ISWA, or SEJ; or evidence of by-lined work pertaining to science intended for the general public and published in 2004 or 2005; or a letter from the editor of a recognized publication assigning you to cover Joint Assembly.
  • Public information officers of scientific societies, educational institutions, and government agencies: must present a business card.

Note: Representatives of publishing houses, for-profit corporations, and the business side of news media must register at the main registration desk at the meeting and pay the appropriate fees, regardless of possession of any of the above documents. They are not accredited as News Media at Joint Assembly.

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5. News Media Registration Form

The News Media Registration Form is set up for online submission, but includes a link to a version that can be printed out and faxed or mailed. Go to: http://www.agu.org/meetings/sm05/review/?content=media&show=press_reg

You may also sign up for the planned 22 May News Media field trip on the form.

The last day for advance press registration is 13 May. If you register in advance, your badge will be waiting when you arrive. You may also register onsite in the Press Room, Room 235.

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6. Who's coming

The following have submitted News Media Registration forms, as of the date of this message. An asterisk (*) indicates participation in the 22 May field trip. If you have submitted the form, but your name does not appear here, or if you wish to participate in the field trip and it is not so indicated, please resubmit the form (Part 5, above).

Anatta, National Center for Atmospheric Research
Tim Appenzeller, National Geographic Magazine
Molly Bentley, BBC World Service
Cindy Clark, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
Jana Goldman, NOAA
Rob Gutro, NASA Goddard
Amy Hansen, Freelance
Jeffrey Kluger, Time
*Rick Lovett, Freelance
Janet McConnaughey, Associated Press
*Sid Perkins, Science News
*Christina Reed, Freelance
*Mark Schleifstein, The Times-Picayune
John VanDecar, Nature
Joe Verrengia, Associated Press
Megan Watzke, Chandra X-ray Center

Source: Eurekalert & others

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