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Bruce Yardley appointed Chief Geologist

Bruce Yardley (Leeds University) has been appointed Chief Geologist by The Radioactive Waste Management Directorate (RWMD) of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA).

Chartership news

Chartership Officer Bill Gaskarth reports on a projected new logo for use by CGeols, advice on applications and company training schemes

Climate Change Statement Addendum

The Society has published an addendum to 'Climate Change: Evidence from the Geological Record' (November 2010) taking account of new research

Cracking up in Lincolnshire

Oliver Pritchard, Stephen Hallett, and Timothy Farewell consider the role of soil science in maintaining the British 'evolved road'

Critical metals

Kathryn Goodenough* on a Society-sponsored hunt for the rare metals that underpin new technologies

Déja vu all over again

As Nina Morgan Discovers, the debate over HS2 is nothing new...

Done proud

Ted Nield hails the new refurbished Council Room as evidence that the Society is growing up

Earth Science Week 2014

Fellows - renew, vote for Council, and volunteer for Earth Science Week 2014!  Also - who is honoured in the Society's Awards and Medals 2014.

Fookes celebrated

Peter Fookes (Imperial College, London) celebrated at Society event in honour of Engineering Group Working Parties and their reports

Geology - poor relation?

When are University Earth Science departments going to shed their outmoded obsession with maths, physics and chemistry?

Nancy Tupholme

Nancy Tupholme, Librarian of the Society and the Royal Society, has died, reports Wendy Cawthorne.

Power, splendour and high camp

Ted Nield reviews the refurbishment of the Council Room, Burlington House

The Sir Archibald Geikie Archive at Haslemere Educational Museum

You can help the Haslemere Educational Museum to identify subjects in Sir Archibald Geikie's amazing field notebook sketches, writes John Betterton.

Top bananas

Who are the top 100 UK practising scientists?  The Science Council knows...

Global geoscience initiative

With the end of the International Year of Planet Earth in 2009, attention has turned to the initiative’s legacy.

global geoscience initiativeWhilst the outreach achievements are clear, with new National Committees established in 76 countries and regions across the world, there is still work to be done to establish a lasting science legacy which recognises the global reach of the geosciences.

Since 2009, four organisations – the Geological Society of London, the American Geosciences Institute, the Geological Society of America and the British Geological Survey – have been working together to explore the idea of a community-based global geoscience research programme.

The idea is not without precedence; the Belmont Forum and Future Earth are two examples of international research initiatives focusing on global environmental change. But, says Edmund Nickless, the Geological Society’s Executive Secretary, there is still a need for a programme which recognises the importance of Solid Earth research.

The Global Geoscience Initiative is exploring ways in which such a research programme could engage the many geoscience subdisciplines, as well as the social sciences. In doing so, it could not only provide a focus for future research, but bring together a community which is often fractured.

So far, a series of town hall meetings have been held to discuss the initiative, resulting in a report which has recently been published on the AGI’s website. There is a broad consensus that a programme should be established which focuses on an issue of contemporary societal concern, with several potential themes identified.

Those discussed so far include natural hazards – earthquakes, volcanoes, coastal erosion, tsunamis, landslide and subsidence – environmentally sustainable energy and mineral resources, ecological concerns and water resources. Also deltas, and the challenges of living on these dynamic systems in the face of future sea level rise.

Why is such an initiative needed? Whilst the importance of environmental research is increasingly being recognised, the geosciences are often overlooked, particularly when such research is communicated. Public and government discussions of climate change, for example, can often forget the role the geosciences play, particularly the importance of research focused on the ground beneath our feet. As global population grows, more and more of the problems the world faces are related to the subsurface; natural resources, waste disposal, infrastructure, natural hazards, and many others.

There is still much to be done – the GGI is currently an informal group, without a mandate. With the help of international bodies and active promotion, the initiative aims to bring greater visibility to the Earth sciences, and act as a rallying point for the community in the future.