Monday, June 30, 2008

AEG National Meeting

The AEG National Meeting is in New Orleans this year on September 15-20. The web page for the conference is now complete with early registration available, the technical program, and abstracts.

AIPG/AHS/3rd IPGC – Technical Session Program Available

The AIPG/AHS/3rd IPGC has posted the Technical Session Program. It'll be held in Flagstaff September 22nd and 23rd and has a number of interesting looking sessions and talks - lots of hydrology stuff of course, but also a lot of presentations about the practice of geology and geology as a profession.

Transportation job crisis

I saw this bit of depressing news via Geoprac:

From American Association of Highway and Transportation Officials, released June 26, 2008.

An estimated 380,000 thousand jobs and hundreds of construction projects are in jeopardy across the nation after Congress failed this week to fix a 3.3 billion dollar deficit in the Highway Trust Fund. The House and Senate dropped a provision from a three-month aviation tax extension bill that would have provided $8 billion to keep the nation’s transportation account solvent.

AASHTO Executive Director John Horsley expressed his strong disappointment saying, “If members of Congress believe that this failure to act has no consequences, they’re wrong.” Most states depend on federal funding to support transportation projects, but states won’t know if their federal highway funding will be cut by 34 percent until their fiscal year begins. For many states, the fiscal year starts on July 1.

This failure to act sets the stage for a last minute effort in late September to rescue America’s Transportation Account. If that does not occur, the federal-aid highway program will be reduced by $13.5 and $20 billion.

This loss would be another blow to the transportation industry, which is suffering from a stagnant economy, high fuel prices, inflationary pressures, and natural disasters.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) is the “Voice of Transportation” representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. AASHTO is a nonprofit, nonpartisan association serving as a catalyst for excellence in transportation.

Monday, June 23, 2008

AEG Photo and Video Contest

We all know how great it is to be a geologist doing field work, but how do you explain it to someone who has no idea what a geologist does for a living, or better yet, to a future geologist? The best way I know is to tag along with a geologist as they go through their day. While a phenomenal experience, I am not sure our members would appreciate looking like a Verizon commercial with a pack of people following them everywhere.

The next best thing would be to relay the love of the profession through photographs and videos. You may not realize, but AEG has a Facebook page now – New Geologist. The greatest part of this new tool is that people from around the world use Facebook to network, and AEG can now post pictures and videos showing what a great job our members do in protecting the public and the environment. But we need material - not only for the Facebook page, but for our website and future e-marketing campaigns.

During this year’s field season, AEG is hosting a photo and video contest. We are looking for the best photos and videos that show “How Environmental and Engineering Geologists Benefit Society”. Send your files by September 1, 2008 to or mail the information to: AEG, PO Box 460518, Denver, CO 80246. Photos and videos need to be original material and appropriate for web posting. AEG will credit the submitter, and the top three photos and videos will be shown at the AEG Annual Meeting and be awarded a prize.

So don’t forget to take your camera and/or video camera with you this summer as you enjoy your work, and have a safe field season!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Public Comment Hearing for Resolution Copper Mine

The Tonto National Forest will hold a public meeting and open house on plan of operations for the proposed Resolution Copper mine near Superior, on Wednesday, June 25. It runs from 4:30 - 8:30 pm in the Superior Jr/Sr High School at 100 Mary Drive.

More information, including Resolution Copper's Proposed Pre-Feasibility Plan of Operation, is online at

Comments can be submitted via e-mail at

Meeting Reminder

This a reminder that our next meeting is this Thursday, June 19 at Pizzeria Uno's in Tempe. The meeting topic is

“Stabilization of Construction and Demolition Debris Landfills/Dumps for Commercial and Industrial Projects – Experiences in the Salt River Valley, Arizona” Presented By: Enamul Hoque, P.E. and Dr. Shameem Dewan, P.E.
Hoque & Associates
Phoenix, Arizona

Drinks and socialization starts around 6 with dinner at 6:30 followed shortly by the presentation. Cost is $20 for members and non-members, $5 for students, and $10 for State Employees.

While an RSVP is alway appreciated, it is not strictly necessary for attending the meeting. I hope to see you there.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Board of Technical Registration Public Hearing

The Arizona Board of Technical Registration has a public hearing in July to discuss fee increases. The hearing is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, July 22, 2008, at 1110 W. Washington, Ste. 250, Phoenix, Arizona. The Agenda for the Public Hearing is attached.

AIPG-AHS-3rd IPGC 2008 Symposium

This September is the AIPG-AHS-3rd IPGC 2008 Symposium in Flagstaff. It's a great conference to attend and I hope to see all of you there. I'll be presenting in the subsidence session.

Early registration ends at the end of June, so take advantage while you can.

Mentor Award

Most of us have one or two people we can point to in our career that have helped motivate us, educate us and provide the necessary guidance to help us excel in our professional lives. Many times, these mentors have helped dozens of colleagues improve in their professional careers. Now there is a way to recognize this tremendous gift to others.

The AEG Board of Director's at the Midyear Board Meeting, May 17-18, approved a new national award to be given to an AEG member, The Karl and Ruth Terzaghi Outstanding Mentor Award. It is to be awarded annually to an AEG member that has provided exceptional service as a mentor to younger environmental and engineering geologists, helping them to advance in the practice of their specialty. The mentor can have worked as a consultant, in a governmental agency or as an university educator. It is the desire of the Board that this first award be given at the next Annual Meeting in New Orleans.

President Dorian Kuper has appointed Terry West, Immediate Past President, to serve as the Chair of the selection committee, Rex Upp, Past President; Bob Valentine, Honorary Member; Abdul Shakoor, Johnston Award recipient; Matt Morris, Piteau Award recipient: and John Williams and Susan Steele Weir as recipients of several of the above awards. This last appointment will be filled in the future by a recipient of the Mentoring Award.

If you would like to nominate someone who has been an outstanding mentor to you and/or others, please send your nominations to Becky Roland at, to be subsequently forwarded to Terry West for committee consideration. You may be asked later to help obtain a CV for the individual you nominate. Nominations are due July 18, 2008.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Dam Break in Wisconsin

The dam at Lake Delton failed as a result of the storms that have hit Wisconsin in the last few days. It took out a few houses, a roadway, and has turned a Chicago bedroom community on its head.

Quake Lakes in China

Last month’s big earthquake in China caused a number of large landslides that created dams in the region’s many rivers. The largest of these lakes is at Tangjiashan and has been in danger of catastrophic failure for some time. The Chinese military mobilized a large work crew to excavate a spillway in an attempt to avert a catastrophic failure.

Dave’s Landslide Blog has covered in all the detail available to the West the efforts of the Chinese to stop this disaster and the status of the lake. Last night critical reservoir elevations were reached and flow in the hastily constructed spillway began to increase exponentially as the spillway began to erode. However, the resulting discharge has not been as large as it could and the disaster of a catastrophic failure appears to have been averted and thousands if not hundreds of thousands of lives at risk have been saved. This article indicates that one of the ways the Chinese chose to avert this disaster is was to channel the flood waters through an abandoned town that was completely destroyed by the quake. It's a hard choice to make, but hard choice need to be made when lives are at stake. Anyway, it’s an interesting story to follow.

Friday, June 6, 2008

June 19th Meeting

Our next meeting is on June 19th at the usual place in Tempe - Uno's Pizzeria. The meeting topic is

Stabilization of Construction and Demolition Debris Landfills/Dumps for Commercial and Industrial Projects – Experiences in the Salt River Valley, Arizona
Presented By: Enamul Hoque, P.E. and Dr. Shameem Dewan, P.E.
Hoque & Associates
Phoenix, Arizona

Drinks and socialization starts around 6 with dinner at 6:30 followed shortly by the presentation. Cost is $20 for members and non-members, $5 for students, and $10 for State Employees.

Please RSVP to Heather Heseler by June 17th (hhespeler[at]ninyoandmoore[dot]com - you'll need to replace the 'at' and 'dot' as appropriate). I hope you can all make it out to the meeting.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008


Welcome to the Arizona Section of the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists (AEG) blog. This is something of an experiment right now to see how it takes. But this seems to be a good way to get information across and not blast as many emails to the distribution list. I hope to keep interesting news updates here, updates on Arizona Section happenings (mostly meetings), updates on AEG national news, and other miscellaneous stuff. Hopefully the other officers will participate as well and I'll post stuff about sponsorship/advertising and the like as well.

Ken, Chair Arizona Section, AEG