2010 Meeting of the Americas: Media Advisory 2

4 August 2010

Joint Release

Rafain Hotel and Convention Center
Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil
8–12 August 2010

Press conferences: Schedule and webstreaming

Contents of this message:

  1. Press conference schedule
  2. Press-conference slides and audio to be streamed live onto the Internet
  3. Press room
  4. Attention PIOs: Sending press releases to Meeting of the Americas
  5. News media registration information
  6. Who’s coming

1. Press conference schedule

The following schedule of press conferences is subject to change, before or during the Meeting of the Americas. Press conferences may be added or dropped, their titles and emphases may change, and participants may change. All updates to this schedule will be announced in the Press Room (Paraná IV, Level 1). Press conferences take place in the Press Room.

Times for press conferences are BRT time (local time in Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil), which is one hour later than U.S. East Coast time (Eastern Daylight Time). Session numbers at the end of each press conference listing may show only the first in a series of related sessions on the topic.


Monday, 9 August

To better understand and anticipate climate change, scientists are trying to determine where carbon dioxide is being absorbed and released, and how much. Researchers have measured and estimated overall global uptake by forests and oceans, and other carbon dioxide sinks and sources, such as tropical rivers and streams. A Yale University team will unveil its estimate, based on thousands of measurements, of an important U.S. source of carbon dioxide that hasn’t previously been gauged. The new findings have implications for carbon dioxide emissions from temperate regions worldwide.


David Butman
Doctoral Student, Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, USA.

Session: B12A


Monday, 9 August

Enormous clouds of radiation and particles shot into space from the Sun sometimes blast Earth, disrupting radio communications, overloading power grids, and zapping satellites. New studies of solar radiation find correlations between microwave emission patterns and timing of the potentially destructive explosions, known as coronal mass ejections. Other novel work is enhancing scientists’ ability to trace those solar outbursts back to specific regions of the Sun where they originate. Speakers might also discuss new techniques for solar observation in South America.


Rodney V. Souza
CRAAM, Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie, São Paulo, Brazil

Dalmiro J. Maia
CICGE, Faculdade Ciências da Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal

Pierre Kaufmann
CRAAM, Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie, São Paulo, Brazil

Sessions: SH13A, SH21A


Monday, 9 August

As Earth’s climate changes and humans increasingly modify tropical forests, many interwoven factors are contributing to the fate of those forests —in Amazonia and elsewhere. Recent studies have probed forest vulnerabilities from the roots of the trees to the clouds above. From them, a clearer (and sometimes surprising) picture is emerging of a forest transformed—or potentially transformed—by drought, fire, land-clearing, and human population growth.


Ruth S. DeFries
Columbia University, New York, New York, USA

Daniel Markewitz
Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA

Paolo Artaxo
Department of Applied Physics, University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

Sessions: B11B, B24A, U41B


Monday, 9 August

Pyrocumulonimbus, a fire-started thunderstorm, can inject into the upper atmosphere huge quantities of smoke and other pollutants from burned biomass. Scientists have recently determined that “pyroCb” occur surprisingly frequently, and that the storms could explain some puzzling atmospheric phenomena that had been previously attributed to volcanic eruptions.


Michael Fromm
Meteorologist, Naval Research Laboratory, Washington, DC, USA

Nathaniel Livesey
Atmospheric Scientist and AURA MLS (Microwave Limb Sounder) Principal Investigator, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, CA USA

Session: A11B


Monday, 9 August

Studying past climate in one of the world’s driest deserts, the Atacama Desert, is not easy, since there are very few records that researchers can use to reconstruct ancient temperatures and rainfall. But now paleoclimatologists have found a trove of information in the form of fossilized feces. A correlation between the size of rodent droppings and rainfall quantities is enabling researchers to establish a new paleoclimate record. Plus, a study of the contents of middens accumulated long ago by rodents offers further insights into the Atacama’s past.


Claudio Latorre Hidalgo Associate Professor, Center for Advanced Studies in Ecology & Biodiversity (CASEB), Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, and Institute of Ecology & Biodiversity (IEB), Santiago, Chile

Francisca Paulina Díaz Aguirre Doctoral Student, Center for Advanced Studies in Ecology & Biodiversity (CASEB), Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, and Institute of Ecology & Biodiversity (IEB), Santiago, Chile.

Sessions: PP21A, PP23B


Tuesday, 10 August

We expect that a thriving forest will absorb the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, perhaps helping to slow climate change. Yet, new measurements in the Amazon basin suggest that things are not so simple. And, another Amazon measurement campaign tracking other greenhouse gases and pollutants from forest burning also reveals striking atmospheric effects. Moreover, the strong mutual influences of shrinking forest area in Amazonia and changes in the region’s atmosphere and climate might be fostering new patterns of cloudiness, with uncertain consequences for both Amazonia’s forests and agriculture.


Steven Wofsy
Professor, School of Engineering and Applied Science and Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

Marcos Longo
Doctoral Student, Department of Earth and Planetary Science, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA

John B. Miller
Research Scientist, NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory, and Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, USA

Sessions: A43D, B11B, U44A


4Tuesday, 10 August

Scientists are increasingly able to model and predict ocean behavior off South America’s coasts, yielding better understanding of impacts on marine life and climate, and providing new tools for managing offshore oil drilling and other activities. Examples include a recently identified type of ocean upwelling, observed off Patagonia, that is not driven by winds and which may account for the extraordinary richness of marine life and carbon sequestering capacity of that region. Also, an ocean model under development by Brazilian scientists has indicated increasing infiltration into the Atlantic of warmer, saltier Indian Ocean waters. Their presence might have caused unexpected and deadly torrential rainfall around Rio de Janeiro earlier this year. Full implementation of the new ocean model, in association with a powerful new global computer model being developed jointly by Brazil, India, and South Africa, might enable scientists to predict such events, possibly saving lives. The ocean model could also facilitate offshore oil operations, fisheries management, and search-and-rescue missions, by furnishing forecasts of circulation patterns as much as a week ahead. Researchers are tuning the global model to focus most sharply on the Southern Hemisphere, a region that usually gets less attention than northern regions in whole-earth-system models.


Edmo J. D. Campos
Professor, Instituto Oceanográfico, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paolo, Brazil

Paulo Nobre
Senior Researcher, CPTEC-CCST/INPE, Cachoeira Paulista, Brazil

Alberto Piola Senior Scientist, Oceanografía, Servicio Hidrografía Naval, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Professor, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Sessions: GC12A, OS12A, OS13C, OS22A, OS31D, OS32A, OS33B, OS34A, OS43D, U11A


Tuesday, 10 August

Since the devastating 12 January 2010 earthquake struck Haiti, killing more than 200,000 people and leaving 1.5 million homeless, several teams of geoscientists have deployed instruments in the region to better evaluate where and how crustal motions have taken place. These instruments, needed to provide a detailed, up-close view of the devastating ground movements, didn’t exist in Haiti at the time of the disaster. So, researchers have been playing catch-up. Now that they have analyzed the instrument readings, studied satellite images, investigated offshore evidence, and personally made field assessments of the stricken region, a new picture of what really happened (and didn’t happen) in Haiti’s ever-shifting fault zone has emerged.


Eric Calais
Professor of Geophysics, Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Arthur Lerner-Lam
Lamont Research Professor, and Associate Director, Seismology, Geology and Tectonophysics, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, New York, New York, USA

Sessions: S41B, U43B

2. Press-conference slides and audio to be streamed live onto the Internet

Reporters who cannot attend the Meeting of the Americas will still be able to participate in press conferences via the Internet. By logging into a Web page (see below), you should be able to listen in real time to the press conference speakers while simultaneously viewing their slides (and any video that might be in those slides) on the Internet. You will be able to ask questions and receive answers by means of the chat feature of the streaming service. (Please note: The chat box is below the viewing screen).

In order to participate, please click on the link below prior to the start of the meeting (August 9), register for the site, and download the free Adobe Flash Player required for viewing the streamed event (unless you have it already). Once you have completed this easy registration process, you can log in at any time a press conference is taking place to participate live in the event.

(Please note: Although AGU has previously streamed its press conferences to the Internet, we are doing it in a new way (of necessity) for this meeting. So, we can’t guarantee that the process will work. If it fails, we will issue new instructions for calling in to press conferences by telephone. However, this will not allow for seeing the slides.)

3. Press room

The Press Room for the meeting is Room Paraná IV, on Level 1 of the convention center. Its phone number is +55 45 3520-9494, ext. 442; give this number to anyone who may have to call you there. There are additional phones for outgoing calls, at no charge to you for business calls.

If you preregistered, your Press/News Media badge will be waiting for you in the Press Room (Paraná IV). However, preregistration has closed. You may register onsite in the Press Room (not at the main registration booths in the lobby).

The Press Room is equipped with wi-fi for use with your own laptop. The Press Room also has one Internet-connected computer for shared use, with a shared printer.

The Press Room (Paraná IV) hours are:

Mon., 9 Aug  0730h-1830h
Tue., 10 Aug  0730h-1830h
Wed., 11 Aug  0730h-1830h
Thu., 12 Aug  0730h-1230h

Coffee and refreshments are served in the Press Room daily, Monday-Thursday, for News Media registrants. Lunch is served at noon on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

4. Attention PIOs: Sending press releases to the Meeting of the Americas

Public information officers are urged to work with scientists from their institutions to produce press releases and other materials for the media, related to their research, regardless of whether the scientists will be participating in press conferences. We suggest around 20 copies of printed materials and three copies of any video for broadcast.

The simplest way to send such materials is with the scientists themselves, asking them to drop them off in the Press Room (Paraná IV). If that is not feasible, AGU press officers will accept emailed press releases, and will print out copies at the meeting to distribute to journalists.

For anyone dropping off materials in the Press Room: If you wish to retrieve remaining copies to take back with you, they may be collected up to 1200h on Thursday, 12 August. After that time, they will be scrapped.

5. News media registration information

The deadline for advance News Media online registration has passed. However, you may register onsite.

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.

Press registration is complimentary. Eligibility 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 one of the following science journalism organizations—the Brazilian Association of Science Journalism (ABJC), the U.S.-based National Association of Science Writers (NASW) or a regional affiliate of NASW, or one of the 38 other associations of science journalists recognized by the World Federation of Science Journalists; or a current membership cards from the U.S.-based Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ); or evidence of by-lined work pertaining to science intended for the general public and published in 2009 or 2010; or a letter from the editor of a recognized publication assigning you to cover the Meeting of the Americas.
  • Public information officers of scientific societies, educational institutions, and government agencies: must present a business card.

Note 1: 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 the meeting.

Note 2: Scientists who are also reporters and who are presenting at this meeting (oral or poster session) may receive News Media credentials if they qualify (see above), but must also register for the meeting and pay the appropriate fee as a presenter.

6. Who’s Coming

The online list of journalists who have preregistered for the Meeting is updated daily.