Although writer, historian, and philosopher Will Durant appreciated the influence of geology on civilization we cannot say with certainty that he would have joined us in Portland for AWRA's 48th Annual Water Resources Conference. But we suspect he would have greatly appreciated the breadth of the topics the Portland meeting will address. Just about every aspect of water resources - physical, chemical, economic, biological, social, geological, legal, hydrological, political, cultural - will be featured.
And what a venue we have! The Rose City, with the iconic Mt. Hood to its east, is one of the best conference venues in the USA and has an appropriate hydrologic address: on the Willamette River (USA's 19th largest by average annual discharge) just south of its confluence with the mighty Columbia River (4th largest). Indeed, the conference hotel, the Red Lion Hotel on the River, sits on the banks of the Columbia just off Interstate 5.
For pre-conference activities on Sunday, 3 November, there are three options. If you want to experience the grandeur that is the Pacific Northwest, be sure to consider one of our two field trips: 1) the Portland Water Bureau's all-day trip to the flanks of Mt. Hood and the Bull Run watershed, exempt from filtration as of this writing, one of the few large municipal water systems in the USA to enjoy such designation; and 2) a half-day trip to see Bonneville Dam and its appurtenances. For those of you thirsting for knowledge that only a classroom environment can provide, we'll have an all-day SWAT workshop.
One of Oregon's own, Steven L. Stockton, Director, Civil Works, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will keynote the conference on 4 November. A Medford native and civil engineering graduate of Oregon State University, Steve brings wisdom, insight, and a calm demeanor rarely seen inside the Beltway.
Our call for abstracts generated over 400 abstracts. We were able to secure additional meeting rooms at the Red Lion so that for most of the time there will be six concurrent oral sessions - a total of 89! As of this writing there are 320 oral and 74 poster presentations. There will be special sessions galore; here are just a few: Groundwater Governance; Watershed Scale Hydrologic Response to Projected Climate Change; Sediment, Geomorphology, and Society; Advances in Low-Impact Development; Aquifer Storage and Recovery; The Columbia River Treaty; Invasive Species; Integrated Water Planning in Washington State; Integrated Water Planning in both Oregon and Washington States; and Ecosystem Services in Floodplain Management. And if you think we have forgotten Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM), think again! IWRM mavens Brenda Bateman, Cheryl Ulrich, Lisa Beutler, and their compatriots will see that you get your fill with plenty of sessions and panels.
Don't forget the Wednesday 2013 Symposium on Collaborative Modeling for Decision Support - Advancing Water Planning for 30 Years. This innovative event, a first for an AWRA Annual Conference, will feature a veritable 'Who's Who' of experts and enhance your conference experience. Speaking of experts, at a special Twilight Presentation on Wednesday evening, Philip C. Ward, Director of the Oregon Water Resources Department, will speak on: A New Day in the Klamath River Basin - Adjudication, Drought, Science, and the Rule of Law.
AWRA's 'Community, Conversation, Connections' mantra will be evidenced by numerous social events: the poster reception on Monday, a local special event on Tuesday, and the awards luncheon and student/young professional event on Wednesday. Immediate Past President Bill Battaglin is planning to lead the 5K Fun Run on Tuesday morning.
We expect about 500 multidisciplinary water resources professionals to descend upon our fair city to partake in discussions of science, engineering, Pinot noirs, policy, management, fish, economics, ales vs. lagers, ASR, and other great liquid issues of the day. You will be enthused by the location, topics, discourse, and the ability to access and network with an exceptional group of water resources professionals. Our outstanding Organizing Committee and the extraordinary AWRA staff are committed to your satisfaction!
See you in Rip City!