In two weeks the price of registration for the Sinkhole Conference goes up! Look below for the details on this great meeting and its fabulous location in Puerto Rico (or just go register now at www.sinkholeconference.com<http://www.sinkholeconference.com>!). Don't forget to bring your family. They'll love the beaches, shopping, and more as you enjoy the meeting. And also don't forget that while folks call it "The Sinkhole Conference," is it about karst water, engineering, geophysics, and so much more.
Below is the other newest news from the cave and karst world:
Grant and Job Opportunities
- $100,000 White-Nose Syndrome Grant Challenge
- James Gage Karst Preserve Fund Raising
- KWI Karst Award Recipient for 2020 Announced
Conferences and Meetings
- The 16th Sinkhole Conference: Register Now! Prices Increase on the 15th!
- 10th Spanish Congress of Speleology
- Karst Record Conference 9: Innsbruck, Austria
- European Geosciences Union Speleogenesis Session: Austria
- Karst Session at Geological Society of America Joint Section Meeting: Call for Abstracts
- International Year of Caves and Karst: Update
- List of Upcoming Cave and Karst Meetings
Please contact the people and organizations listed below for more information, and feel free to share this message with anyone who may be interested.
$100,000 White-Nose Syndrome Grant Challenge
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is announcing a $100,000 challenge to combat white-nose syndrome (WNS), a lethal fungal disease that has killed millions of bats in North America and pushed some native bat species to the brink of extinction. Awards will be given to individuals or teams who identify innovative ways to permanently eradicate, weaken, or disarm the fungus.
You don't have to be a bat expert to enter the White-nose Syndrome Challenge. This opportunity is open to anyone with an innovative idea for tools or techniques that will lead to solutions to reduce the effects of the fungus without harming other beneficial species or the environment.
White-nose syndrome is caused by a fungus that sometimes looks like white fuzz on bats' faces and wings. The fungus thrives in cold, damp places and infects bats during hibernation. It disrupts bats' winter dormancy, causing them to expend too much energy stored in their fat and often resulting in dehydration and starvation before spring arrives.
Since 2007, white-nose syndrome has been confirmed in 33 states and seven Canadian provinces. At some affected sites, 90 to 100 percent of bats have disappeared, most succumbing to the disease.
There is no known cure for white-nose syndrome, but scientists worldwide are working together to study the disease and how it can be controlled. Winning ideas from this challenge will be the focus of future collaborations with scientists, designers and engineers to bring solutions to life.
The deadline for individuals or teams to enter the Challenge is December 31, 2019 by 11:59 p.m. ET. For additional information regarding rules and eligibility, visit the White-nose Syndrome Challenge web page or www.challenge.gov
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will hold an informational briefing for anyone interested in entering the Challenge on Nov. 20, 2019 at 2 p.m. ET. Advance registration is required. For more information, please visit the White-nose Syndrome Challenge web-page.
Please help us to spread the word about the Challenge by sharing this email and attached flyer with your peers, contacts, networks and the public. Thank you for joining the fight to save our bats!
WNS Regional Coordinator
North Atlantic-Appalachian Region
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
300 Westgate Center Drive
Hadley, MA 01035
office: (413) 253-8215
mobile: (413) 335-4482
James Gage Karst Preserve Fund Raising
The James Gage Karst Preserve is in Schoharie County, New York. The management team has begun a fund-raising effort to replace and upgrade the cabin on the property. The existing cabin was in poor condition when acquired decades ago, has now deteriorated to the point where it has become an eyesore in the neighborhood, is unusable for any effective purposes, and will face code violations if not corrected. The generosity of members and friends has raised nearly a third of the way to the goal of $30,000 for the project. We are pleased to announce that our friend and long-time area caver Seth Perlman has issued a challenge to match dollar for dollar, the next $5,000 in contributions towards the cabin project. This generous offer will take us to two thirds of our overall goal.
The Gage cabin has been instrumental in the development of many cavers in the northeast over the years. Seth sums it up nicely: "The Gage cabin meant the world to me when I started caving - I know it's a dump (or at least it was 18 years ago), but it was my home away from home every weekend for a long time, and I loved it. I hope future generations of cavers love the new one."
The new cabin will provide a high-quality, easily maintained resource for cavers for decades to come. Its rural neighborhood setting makes it more amenable to quiet groups and it will serve to take some of the pressure off our nearby Schoharie cabin, allowing that venue to retain its more "relaxed" atmosphere. The cabin rebuild proposal with photos can be seen in NSS News, October 2019, page 28.
We'd like to thank Seth for his generosity and urge you all to take advantage to double the value of your contribution with this challenge match over the next few months. Donations by check should be made payable to the National Speleological Society and mailed to 6001 Pulaski Pike, Huntsville, AL 35810-1122. Please include "Gage Cabin" in the FOR line. You may donate by credit card at https://members.caves.org/page/donate Select "Nature Preserves Fund" and be sure to include "Gage Cabin" in comments.
We thank you for your support of the NSS James Gage Karst Preserve,
Bob Simmons, Emily Davis, and Mike Warner
KWI Karst Award Recipient for 2020 Announced
The Board of the Karst Waters Institute has announced that Dr. Stein-Erik Lauritzen, Professor of Earth Science at University of Bergen, Norway, will be the recipient of the 2020 Karst Award. This prestigious honor has been given annually since 1999 to a scientist who has made significant contributions to the field.
Dr. Lauritzen has made seminal and ongoing contributions to the field of speleothem science and the study of glacier ice-contact speleogenesis. He and his students and colleagues have helped to build an understanding of paleoclimate in the terrestrial realm. The award will be presented at the Climate Change - the Karst Record IX (KR9) Conference at Innsbruck, Austria, 12-15 July, 2020. Information on the meeting can be found online https://www.uibk.ac.at/congress/kr9/
The Karst Waters Institute is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the fundamental understanding of karst water systems for professionals and the public. Through publications, conferences, and outreach, the Institute serves the profession and the public good. https://karstwaters.org/
The 16th Sinkhole Conference: Register Now! Prices Increase on the 15th!
The price of registration for the 16th Multidisciplinary Conference on Sinkholes and Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst, generally called "The Sinkhole Conference," increases on November 15th. This will be perhaps its most fabulous location yet, in historic San Juan and the incredible karst of Puerto Rico. Another first will be that nearly all meals are included in the price of registration, making the overall cost of attendance cheaper, as well as much easier and more productive than many past conferences. Access to the conference is also easy, often as cheap or cheaper a flight than to many other locations in the US.
A lot of great talks are lined up, as well as field trips, short courses, and more. For all of the details, to register for the conference before the price goes up, and also to reserve your hotel room, visit www.sinkholeconference.com
10th Spanish Congress of Speleology
The 10th Spanish Congress of Speleology will be celebrated on 6-9 December 2019 at Morillo de Tou, Huesca, Spain. This location seems as best place in the country to meet and enjoy "Pura Speleo" days. The meeting has been designed to include every national group as well as all individuals who would want to attend. The congress will scheduled papers, technical meetings, discussion tables, exhibitions, guided visits, etc. Don't think about it. Come'on and join in!
For registration and other details, visit https://espeleoaragon.com/xcongresoespanolespeleologia/
Karst Record Conference 9: Innsbruck, Austria
This conference will bring together scientists and students to share the latest progress in the rapidly developing field of cave- and karst-based (palaeo)climate research. Following the successful meetings in Bergen, Norway (1996), Krakow, Poland (2000), Montpellier, France (2003), Baile Herculane, Romania (2006), Chongqing, China (2008), Birmingham, UK (2011), Melbourne, Australia (2014), and Austin/TX, USA (2017), the Climate Change: The Karst Record IX (KR9) conference will be held from July 12th-15th, 2020 at the University of Innsbruck, Austria. For more information, follow https://www.uibk.ac.at/congress/kr9/.
European Geosciences Union Speleogenesis Session: Austria
The 2020 meeting of the European Geosciences Union will be held in Vienna, Austria, on 3-8 May 2020 and will include a session on speleogenesis. All abstracts on the topic are welcome and must be received by 15 January 2020. Below are the details about the session.
Session GM13.1: Caves: genesis and evolution through time
Conveners: Andrea Columbu, Carlos Pérez, Laura Sanna
Karst systems are complex subterraneous landscapes, and their comprehensions require a multidisciplinary approach. Indeed, speleogenesis is controlled by multiple factors such as nature of the bedrock, tectonic, hydrology, geochemistry, biochemistry and climate. All these (and others) elements interact through time, and constraining the geochronology of cave evolution, from the "inception horizon" to the actual status, is often challenging. Furthermore, underground voids might be the result of diverse geomorphological drivers (vadose vs phreatic flows, epigenic vs hypogenic conditions, hydrothermal waters, sulphuric fluids, water mixing, condensation/corrosion, etc) resulting in an array of different shapes and geochemical signatures that need to be correctly interpreted in order to define the genetic environments.
This session aims to novel studies on speleogenesis, with a particular attention on its geochronological aspect. Multidisciplinary approaches and innovative techniques are strongly welcomed.
For information about the conference, to send your abstract, and to register, visit https://egu2020.eu/about_and_support/general_information.html.
Karst Session at Geological Society of America Joint Section Meeting: Call for Abstracts
The 69th Annual Meeting of the Southeastern Section of the Geological Society of America will be helped jointly with the Society's 55th Annual Meeting of the Northeastern Section on 20-22 March 2020 in Reston, Virginia, USA. Below is information on a karst session that will be held during this joint meeting.
T6. Engineering and Environmental Geology of Karst Terranes
This session invites papers on the engineering and environmental aspects of karst as it relates to land-use development in the northeastern and southeastern regions of the United States.
The abstract deadline is 10 December 2019. For more information open this page
International Year of Caves and Karst: Update
This will be the biggest and most important speleological event ever. Your participation as part of the global cave and karst community is crucial. The purpose of the International Year of Caves and Karst (IYCK) is to teach the world about the importance of caves and karst. Public understanding and support of caves and karst is currently very limited. As a result, funding, regulations, and opportunities for exploration, research, and management are also very limited.
The International Union of Speleology (UIS) has declared 2021 as the IYCK in a major effort to make the world aware of how caves and karst are valuable to all people. To make this possible, the UIS is calling on all of its member countries and other organizations to begin planning a series of public lectures, programs, demonstration of techniques, and others activities for 2021.
The IYCK website is now open at http://www.iyck2021.org/. It is designed to teach the public about caves and karst, and so it has a great amount of educational information. It also has information on how to become involved in the IYCK. Please send the activities you plan for the IYCK to http://iyck2021.org/index.php/contact-us/ so we can post them on the "Events" page of the website. Look at the Partners page, and if your organization is not listed, send your logo and website address and you will be included. If you know of organizations that should be involved, contact them. The website will continue to be updated so save the address.
More details about the IYCK are described in the December 2018 UIS Bulletin (http://www.uis-speleo.org/downloads/uis-bulletins/uisb602.pdf) and they will be updated in next issue of the UIS Bulletin, which will be posted around the end of this year. Updates will also be sent through this and other e-mail lists. If you have questions, suggestions, or want to offer assistance, contact us!
The IYCK has incredible potential to advance speleology in many and great ways, but only if we all work together to make it possible.
George Veni, PhD
Executive Director, National Cave and Karst Research Institute (NCKRI)
President, International Union of Speleology (UIS)
List of Upcoming Cave and Karst Meetings
- 13th European Cave Rescue Meeting, 15-17 November 2019 (Istanbul, Turkey), https://caverescue.eu/13th-european-cave-rescue-meeting/
- 10th Spanish Congress of Speleology, 6-9 December 2019 (Morillo de Tou, Huesca, Spain), https://espeleoaragon.com/xcongresoespanolespeleologia/
- 16th Multidisciplinary Conference on the Engineering and Environmental Impacts of Karst, 20-24 April 2020 (San Juan, Puerto Rico), www.sinkholeconference.com
- 23rd Conference of the Australasian Cave and Karst Management Association, 3-8 May 2020 (Jenolan Caves, New South Wales, Australia), www.ackma.org.
- 9th International Workshop on Ice Caves (IWIC-IX) & the 12th Scientific Conference Research, Utilization and Protection of Caves, 12-15 May 2020 (Liptovský Mikuláš, Slovakia), http://www.ssj.sk/en/akcia/18-12th-scientific-conference-research-protection-and-utilization-of-caves
- UNESCOkarst 2020: Conservation of Fragile Karst Resources, 18-22 May 2020 (Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA), https://unescokarst2020.com/
- 25th International Conference on Subterranean Biology, 28 June - 4 July 2020 (Alba Iulia, Romania), https://www.25icsb.com/
- Karst Record IX (KR9) Conference, 12-15 July 2019 (Innsbruck, Austria), https://www.uibk.ac.at/congress/kr9/
- US National Speleological Society Annual Convention, 27-31 July 2020 (Elkins, West Virginia, USA), https://caves.regfox.com/nss-convention-2020
- Carbonate Critical Zone: An NSF-Sponsored Workshop, 2-5 August 2020 (Philadelphia and central Pennsylvania), https://carbonatecriticalzone.research.ufl.edu/
- 19th International Symposium on Vulcanospeleology, 29 August - 5 September 2020 (Catania, Italy), http://www.19isvetna.com/
- Geological Society of America Convention, 25-28 October 2020 (Montréal, Québec, Canada), http://www.geosociety.org/
- EuroKarst 2021: The European Congress on Karst Hydrogeology and Carbonate Reservoirs, 22-24 June 2021 (Málaga, Spain), http://www.eurokarst.org/
- 18th International Congress of Speleology, 23-29 July 2021 (Lyon, France), http://uis2021.speleos.fr/
- SpeleoKamaraton, 29 October - 1 November 2021 (Marina di Camerota, Salerno, Italy), http://www.speleokamaraton.eu/