SEGH Events

Supporting Conferences, meetings and events

13 December 2015
A guide to groups interested in hosting an SEGH event.

Introduction & Overview

The major activity of SEGH is to promote, internationally, conferences and symposia addressing the main aims of the Society (www.segh.net ), to encourage active debate and discussion on pressing research issues for experienced and early career researchers in academia, governmental and non-governmental organisations, business and industry.

Meetings are held on a regular basis and are currently organised geographically in Europe, Asia/Pacific and the Americas. The Society has global membership and the Board seeks to include all regions in events. Currently, SEGH promotes three types of event:

1. The International Symposium on Environmental Geochemistry (ISEG).

This is the key International meeting on Environmental Geochemistry, held every 3 years since 1991, jointly promoted by SEGH, International Association of Geochemistry, and the International Medical Geology Association (IMGA). The meeting is typically 4-5 days (+ field trips) attracting ~200-300 + delegates, with parallel sessions and has support from a number of relevant organisations. This meeting will be coordinated on behalf of the supporting societies by the International Association of Geochemistry (IAGC), and through a board with representation from IMGA and SEGH.

2. Annual SEGH events.

These meetings are regularly organised regionally, typically 2-3 days (+ field trip) attracting ~60-100 delegates. Since the 1980s the most successful regional conferences have been the SEGH Meetings held in Europe (the International board are keen to promote regional activities more widely).

3. Specific, focused workshops, symposia or task force activities

Less regular events, in a variety of formats (e.g. one day meetings, jointly hosted or longer working group activities). A specific focus or a timely issue normally stimulates the organisation and SEGH has been able to support a number of such events which have had significant impact on the scientific community and often resulted in special issues of the Society’s journal Environmental Geochemistry & Health. Examples include: Environmental Chromium contamination and remediation (v23 (3) 2001); Changes in Soil Quality & Its Remediation (v26 (2-3) 2004), Arsenic in the Environment – Risks & Management Strategies (v31 (S1), 2009), Environment & Human Health (v31 (2), 2009; Practical Applications of Medical Geology (v32 (6), 2010).

The Society For Environmental Geochemistry & Health

The SEGH International Board, with regional representation welcomes offers to host SEGH supported meetings and events. The Board meets regularly, and regional chairs (and local members) undertake to identify hosts and stimulate the organisation of meetings. The Board (International and Regional) coordinate programme of meetings, reviewing proposals and accepting/nominating hosts for events. This includes synchronising meetings and forward planning to try to ensure SEGH supported meetings do not clash with other related events.

Support from SEGH and structure of events

There are few if any “rules”, but SEGH, over the last 30 years of activity has a loose format and process which has been successful:

• the registration fee should offer a discount fee for members of SEGH (we have member and student member grades) and a non member fee which includes annual SEGH membership (this membership fee is passed to SEGH who then provide Springer journal subscription fees for members to online access to the complete EGAH catalogue); SEGH will support (and help judge) prizes for best student oral and poster presentations; any "profit" from the conference is normally split between SEGH and the organisers; SEGH board and members will support the host with advice on organisational aspects, getting contacts and in disseminating/advertising the event to their own networks, as well as providing many of the delegates. Typical format is for a regional meeting is for 2 or 3 days of presentations, with an optional field visit and a few "star speakers" which follow the normal (and a few unusual) topics of SEGH interest. We hope for a broad set of topics, so our members can see a place to offer presentations, but also learn something new. The link between “environment” and “health” is a core theme.

Questions for organisers

Have you considered the following issues, and whether you:

1. Have support from your institution – are you able to get reduce costs of room hire, facilities etc?

2. Can access website space be available and supported for a conference web site?

3. Can access efficient on-line registration (and payment) facilities?

4. Have organisational support from colleagues to set up and run the event?

5. Can obtain support grants or sponsorship from networks / organisations?

6. Can you provide a good social element for the meeting – conference dinner and mixer events?

7. Set a fee level to attract delegates and ensure breakeven / minor profit from the meeting?

8. Can you provide access to suitable accommodation and ensure the logistics of arrival at the conference venue is straight forward – providing a number of options for delegates is ideal, some will bring accompanying persons, others will have very restricted budget. Consider the physical journey for delegates and try to organise to make it as straightforward as possible.

Application/Expression of interest.

The SEGH board is keen to receive offers to host meetings or events falling into any of the above categories. The Board would like to receive a formal request containing as much information and outline of arrangements for the meeting. This will then be considered and in the event of competing bids for meetings, the Board will arrange a “vote” and the applicants informed of the board’s decision.

On behalf of the Society for Environmental Geochemistry & Health 22 November 2012

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Science in the News

Latest on-line papers from the SEGH journal: Environmental Geochemistry and Health

  • Characteristics of residual organochlorine pesticides in soils under different land-use types on a coastal plain of the Yellow River Delta 2015-07-04

    Abstract

    The residual levels of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) were examined in soils covering five types of land use along a salinity gradient on the Yellow River Delta. The most prominent OCPs were dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (∑DDT, arithmetic mean = 5.11 μg kg−1), hexachlorocyclohexane (∑HCH, 1.69 μg kg−1) and ∑endosulfan (10.4 μg kg−1). The spatial variability of OCPs composition shifted from γ-HCH and o,p′-DDT dominated pesticides in coastal soils to p,p′-DDE dominated pesticides in inland soils. In different land-use types, the percentages of β-HCH and p,p′-DDE are characterized by more recalcitrant components in decreasing order of vegetable fields, cereal fields, cotton fields, wetlands and tidal flats with increasing soil salinity. However, the less recalcitrant components, γ-HCH and o,p′-DDT, showed an opposite trend. Endosulfan sulfate predominated in all land-use types. Residual levels of β-HCH were affected by soil organic matter. The correlations between γ-HCH and clay content and between p,p′-DDE, o,p′-DDT and salinity might associate with the influence of sediment cotransport by the Yellow River and the density of anthropogenic activities in coastal region. Depth distribution of the OCPs in typical soil profiles also implied that local historical usage and sediment transport by the Yellow River both affected the OCPs residual in this region.

  • Can abundance of methanogen be a good indicator for CH 4 flux in soil ecosystems? 2015-06-30

    Abstract

    Methane, which is produced by methanogenic archaea, is the second most abundant carbon compound in the atmosphere. Due to its strong radiative forcing, many studies have been conducted to determine its sources, budget, and dynamics. However, a mechanistic model of methane flux has not been developed thus far. In this study, we attempt to examine the relevance of the abundance of methanogen as a biological indicator of methane flux in three different types of soil ecosystems: permafrost, rice paddy, and mountainous wetland. We measured the annual average methane flux and abundance of methanogen in the soil ecosystems in situ. The correlation between methane flux and the abundance of methanogen exists only under a specific biogeochemical conditions such as SOM of higher than 60 %, pH of 5.6–6.4, and water-saturated. Except for these conditions, significant correlations were absent. Therefore, microbial abundance information can be applied to a methane flux model selectively depending on the biogeochemical properties of the soil ecosystem.

  • Evaluation of microelement contents in Clethra barbinervis as food for human and animals in contrasting geological areas 2015-06-29

    Abstract

    The young leaves of Clethra barbinervis Sieb. et Zucc, which is a deciduous tree species found in secondary forests widely in Japan, are used in spring as a local traditional food by local populations, and the bark of this plant is also preferred by sika deer, Cervus nippon. However, C. barbinervis has been known to accumulate heavy metals in its leaves. Then, we aimed to clarify the characteristics of microelement contents in C. barbinervis and to discuss the value of this species as food for humans and animals through the analysis of seasonal changes and distribution in various organs of C. barbinervis growing under two different geological conditions. We found that C. barbinervis is an accumulating and tolerant plant for Ni, Co and Mn. It accumulates Ni from serpentine soil containing Ni at high concentration, and Co and Mn from acidic soils based on crystalline schist. The seasonal variation in element concentrations in leaves indicates that the young leaves contain Cu at high concentration and that eating them in spring season may be advantageous to humans, due to the associated increase in Cu intake. The high concentrations of Cu and Zn in the bark of C. barbinervis might explain why deer prefer to eat the bark of this species.