Riparian Ecosystems IV Proceedings
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The fact that the 2012 Summer Specialty Riparian Ecosystems IV
conference is bridging time and space with the Contaminants of Emerging
Concern in Water Resources conference is an indicator of this conference's
uniqueness. Riparian ecosystems likewise bridge terrestrial and
the aquatic ecosystems in the landscape. Riparian ecosystems are
central to watershed health and activities. The conference and proceedings
reflect the planning and decisions of the Conference Committee to
push the envelope, to expand opportunities for education, networking,
and investigation of riparian ecosystems. The committee was assembled
from academia, state and federal governments, and the private sector.
Under the leadership of Paul Mayer, the Conference Chair, the committee
developed subject areas for the program. The topics for the sessions
are exciting, diverse and innovative. Anne Hairston -Strang, Philippe
Vidon, Gary Speiran, Paul Mayer and Judy Okay should be commended
for their assistance with paper and abstract reviews. It is an arduous
task, however the reward is seeing and reviewing what is new in
the riparian world of research and assessment.
The technical progam starts with a "Special Session"
on Coupled Biogeochemical Cycles, led by Philippe Vidon. This panel
content promises to be state of the science. There are 20 sessions
with presentations by very notable speakers from the United States,
Canada and other International locations. Unique Brown Bag lunch
sessions on Thursday feature Tidal Riparian Ecosystems and Ecosystem
Services. These two sessions present opportunities to explore and
discuss controversial topics that extend beyond everyday opinion
about the values of riparian ecosystems.
Other program highlights are the outstanding plenary speakers,
Sujay Kaushal, Jenna Compton, and Jane Rowan. Their names, faces
and research should be familiar to the riparian community. The Conference
Committee decision to have a student competition was made despite
the very busy schedules of everyone involved in the conference.
Tom Isenhart and Kelly Addy took responsibility for the Student
Competition. This competition highlights student research. It allows
new faces and thoughts to be presented opening future opportunities
for the competing participants. We are grateful for the leadership
of Tom and Kelly.
The last is not the least in the Riparian Ecosystems IV conference.
The final day has an assemblage of speakers with collective experience
spanning topics and years of research. The culmination of the conference
is an outstanding field trip planned by Kate Dwire. The fortunate
participants will venture into the Rocky Mountains and explore the
Colorado forests, their riparian benefits, as well as the various
impacts influencing the benefits they provide.
Thanks to the staff at AWRA, Pat, Ken, Mary, Mike, and Steve for
assisting the Conference Committee with all that was needed to produce
a conference to be remembered.
Dr. Judith Okay
J&J Okay Consulting, Inc.
Technical Program Chair