Paleonet: Deep Time Earth-Life Observatory Network (DETELON) Town Hall Meeting at GSA

Thomas Olszewski olszewski at
Mon Oct 25 21:53:56 GMT 2010

Please join us at upcoming town hall meetings at GSA in Denver (Monday, November 1, from 5:30-6:30 PM, in Colorado Convention Center Room 108) and AGU in San Francisco (time and place to be announced) to hear about and discuss the Deep Time Earth-Life Observatory Network (DETELON) initiative.

The aim of DETELON is to mobilize the deep-time Earth history community to address the three great challenges facing the scientific community as articulated by NSF's Advisory Committee for Geosciences (AC-GEO) in its GeoVision report (  Namely, in the near future Earth's ecosystems will encounter climatic and environmental conditions that have not been seen previously for some 40 million years or more. These changes include increases in global mean temperatures and the acidification of the ocean that have the potential to profoundly affect life and ecosystem functions everywhere on the planet.  Climate models have made great strides in recent years and concerted effort to gather climate and environmental proxies from sources like ice cores, tree rings, terrestrial and marine surface sediments, and lake cores have provided valuable insight into the complex transition from glacial to interglacial conditions in Earth's recent past.  However, only the "deep time" record of Earth history contains an actual record of how ecosystems worked under conditions analogous to those expected in the next several centuries.

In response to the fundamental challenges articulated in the AC-GEO report, the Paleontological Society, in conjunction with The Society of Vertebrate Paleontology and other US paleontological organizations, organized a workshop to refine and expanded the concept of a Deep Time Earth-Life Observatory Network (DETELON), an idea that emerged from a 2006 community workshop on Future Research Directions in Paleontology (FRDP;  DETELON is intended to address integrative problems of Earth history in a coordinated fashion to provide better tools towards predicting the behavior of the Earth-Life system.  The full report from that workshop can be found at, where members of the Earth history community can provide their feedback and ideas.

DETELON Town Hall at GSA in Denver: Monday, November 1, from 5:30-6:30 PM, in Colorado Convention Center Room 108

David Bottjer and Douglas Erwin, Organizers
Thomas Olszewski, Participant

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