The meeting was hosted by Fernando Barriga at Altis Hotel in Lisbon.
The ECORD Council membership has changed significantly during the last six months. Fernando Barriga welcomed the new members. ECORD Council expressed heartfelt thanks to the three last members who have rotated off, Raymond Schorno, Are Carlson and Sören Dürr. Their knowledge and enthusiasm as ECORD Council members will be missed.
Because Sören Dürr (Germany) is rotating off, the Council elected Nigel Wardell (Italy) to replace him as the current incoming vice chair, to become the Chair from 1 October 2009. Guido Lüniger replaces him as a member of the ECORD Executive. The current Executive consists of F. Barriga (chair), C. Franklin (outgoing vice chair), N. Wardell (incoming vice chair), C. Mével (EMA), Reinhard Belocky (Austria), and G. Lüniger (Germany).
Guido Lüniger was elected incoming vice-Chair from October 1, 2009 and will become the Chair as of April 1, 2010. Chris Franklin will replace Guido Lüniger as a member of the Executive.
Daniel Prieur reported on the activities of the Board of Governors (BoG). The BoG appointed Dr. Kiyoshi Suyehiro as the new President of IODP-MI, Inc. Dr. Suyehiro took office on May 16, 2009 to replace Dr. Manik Talwani who completed his 5 years of service on May 15, 2009 as the inaugural president of IODP-MI. At their next meeting, IODP-MI members have been requested to approve changes in the By-laws to facilitate the functioning of the corporation. In particular, this will allow the consolidation of the two IODP-MI offices into a single one in Tokyo.
Dr. Kiyoshi Suyehiro, President of IODP-MI, presented his views on IODP central management and the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead. He confirmed his plan to consolidate the two IODP-MI offices into a single one located in Tokyo to increase efficiency and reduce costs. The Council understands the rationale for this decision but hopes that the closing of the Washington DC office will not disturb the activities of IODP-MI. ECORD Council thanked Dr. Suyehiro for his visit and wished him success in his new appointment.
Nicholas Arndt reported on the last SASEC meeting held in Lisbon in January 2009. SASEC considered the motion passed by the ECORD Council regarding the implementation of deep biosphere initiative. All efforts will be made to accomplish a major step in this theme in view of the renewal of the program. SASEC appointed a subcommittee to assess models for the proposal evaluation process for the post-renewal phase of IODP. ECORD Council strongly feels that the mission concept should be incorporated in the new scheme. A major issue for the transition phase is to deal with the proposals currently in the system. ECORD Council recommended deactivating proposals that are lowly ranked and realistically will not be drilled in the current phase. Reducing drilling time to accommodate more expeditions before the end of the program should also be considered. SASEC is overlooking the organisation of the INVEST conference which will be a major step towards establishing the science plan for the new programme.
Dan Evans reported on ESO activities concerning mission-specific platform expeditions. He informed the Council that the New Jersey Shallow Shelf (NJSS) Expedition successfully started on April 30, 2009 from Atlantic City and is planned to end on July 19. The Onshore Science Party will meet at the Bremen Core Repository, starting on November 6. NJSS expedition has been widely publicised in the United States. ESO indicated that coring and logging have, as expected, proved to be very challenging, however the coring recovery is very encouraging.ESO will conduct Great Barrier Reef Environmental Changes Expedition (GBREC) this Fall. The platform provider is Bluestone, a company located in Singapore. The contract was signed on April 11. The vessel is the Bluestone Topaz. The expedition is expected to start at the end of October, from Townsville, Australia. The Onshore Science Party is scheduled to start April 16, 2010 at the Bremen Core Repository.
Gilbert Camoin reported on ESSAC activities. He reminded the Council that he is rotating off. As of October 1, 2009, Rüdiger Stein will be the new ESSAC Chair and the office will move to Germany. The new office will be hosted by AWI in Bremerhaven and a new science coordinator will be appointed. ECORD Council expressed its thanks to the CEREGE ESSAC Office, the chair Gilbert Camoin and the scientific coordinator Bonnie Wolff-Boenisch. They made the office functions extremely efficiently for the benefit of the ECORD scientific community.
ESSAC informed the Council on IODP operations for FY09, FY10 and beyond. At the last SPC meeting held in March, 10 proposals were forwarded to the Operation Task Force (OTF) for potential future scheduling. These included only one MSP Proposal (New England Shelf Hydrogeology), still waiting for the site survey data approval. SPC deactivated 3 proposals that had little chance of being implemented within the current phase of the IODP. ESSAC presented statistics regarding active proposals to the Council. ECORD, with 36% of 113 active proposals, maintains a healthy presence.
Gilbert Camoin presented the status of program renewal activities and related timelines. ESSAC organised an EGU session followed by a workshop “Beyond 2013: The Future of European Scientific Drilling” at the last EGU meeting in Vienna. The report of the workshop is being finalised and will be released before the INVEST Conference, scheduled in Bremen (Germany) on September 23-25, 2009.
The ECORD Distinguished Lecturer Program is very successful. The three appointed lecturers for 2008-2009 are Achim Kopf, Peter Clift and John Parkes.
ESSAC presented its plans for ECORD summer schools. In 2009, ESSAC will sponsor two summer schools:
- 2009 Urbino Summer School in Paleoclimatology (USSP)
- ECORD Summer School 2009 in Bremen on “Geodynamics of Mid-Ocean Ridges”
15 scholarships have been allocated to help young scientists participate. In 2010, ESSAC decided to sponsor three summer schools:
- Summer School on Dynamics of Past Climate Changes, Bremen, Germany,
- Urbino Summer School in Paleoclimatology, Urbino, Italy,
- Summer School Ocean and climate changes in polar and subpolar environments, Québec, Canada.
In 2010, ESSAC will launch the “ECORD grants” to support outstanding graduate students to conduct research related to samples/data collected by DSDP/ODP/IODP.
Since the last meeting, two new workshops have been sponsored by the ESF-run Magellan Workshop Series.
EMA informed Council that the final report of ECORD-Net project has been published, all deliverables are available on-line at http://www.ecord.org/enet/ecord-net.html. Since the end of ECORD Net, August 31, 2008, ECORD is only supported from the national contribution of the member countries and does not receive funding from the European Commission.
To coordinate outreach activities EMA ESO ESSAC meetings are being organised on a regular basis. EMA released Newsletter #12 distributed at EGU 2009 meeting. New brochures explaining the functioning of ECORD, ESSAC and ESO are being prepared for next Fall. In coordination with IODP-MI, EMA organised the IODP booth at the EGU annual meeting in Vienna last April. The joint IODP-ICDP Town hall meeting was held on April 23 and gathered the ocean and continental drilling communities.
The project “The Deep Sea & Sub-Seafloor Frontier” (DS3F), coordinated by Achim Kopf (University of Bremen), has been approved by the European Commission. This coordination action will be funded at a level of ~1 M€ to organise workshops and produce a road map for the future.
EMA presented the ECORD budget situation for FY10 and beyond. The funding is secured for the implementation of the New Jersey Shallow Shelf and the Great Barrier Reef Environmental Changes expeditions in FY09 and FY10 respectively. Beyond, there are still uncertainties.
EMA presented the ECORD budget situation for FY08, FY09 and beyond. Most ECORD member countries have paid their contributions for FY08; a few are still missing for FY07 and FY08. The Council approved the FY08 budget statement presented by ESO. EMA informed Council that, despite the delay in the New Jersey Shallow Shelf expedition to FY09, ICDP has agreed to maintain its financial participation. The ECORD Council is grateful to ICDP for its renewed commitment.
Before the ECORD Council discussed the future of ocean drilling, post 2013, several presentations took place:
- Dr. Ulrich Harms, Executive Secretary of the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (ICDP), presented the Structure and Functions of its organisation. ECORD Council considered ICDP as a valuable example of a successful scientific drilling programme that could bring new ideas into the post-IODP program.
- Dr. Marc Heppener, ESF Director of Science and Strategy Development, explored different avenues of collaboration with ECORD. ECORD Council tasked the Executive to maintain and deepen the discussion with ESF.
- Dr. Lester Lembke-Jene, ERICON Aurora Borealis Science and Technical Implementation Manager, reported on the status of the ERICON Project. Decision to build the ship is not yet made. The Arctic will certainly be an important topic of the new science plan and the Aurora Borealis could be used as an MSP to drill in ice covered areas. There are still a number of questions to solve (proposal handling, science planning, funding of operations, etc…) that will be addressed by the EC funded ERICON project.
ECORD Council discussed its vision on the future of scientific ocean drilling, post 2013. The ECORD Council emphasized that the new science plan should address questions of societal relevance without relinquishing the research in basic science. Moreover, although a key tool in addressing scientific problems regarding the Earth system, in many cases drilling needs to be integrated with other approaches. ECORD Council considers that cooperating with other programmes that investigate the deep-sea floor will be a goal for the future. ECORD will continue to actively pursue the development of the “Deep-Sea Frontier” Initiative through its support and participation in the project “Deep-Sea and Subseafloor Frontier DS3F” recently funded by the European Commission.
ECORD Council appointed a delegation to represent ECORD interests at the IWG+ (International Working Group Plus) meetings. Designated members for the first meeting are: Mireille Perrin (France), Guido Lüniger (Germany), F. Barriga (Portugal), José Ramón Sanchez Quintana (Spain), Chris Franklin (United Kingdom) and Catherine Mével (EMA). Chris Franklin will chair the delegation and will be proposed as ECORD co-chair of IWG+. Anne de Vernal (Canada) will join this group in the Fall.
Next Council meeting: Rome, Italy, November 2009
|ECORD Council members/alternates
|Anne de Vernal
|Nigel Wardell (vice-chair)
|Fernando Barriga (chair)
|José Ramon Sanchez Quintana
|Chris J. Franklin (vice-chair)