Paleonet: International Conference on Volcanism, Impacts and Mass Extinctions

argo at argo at
Tue Dec 6 20:00:50 GMT 2011

At the risk of sounding like sour grapes (which probably had not yet evolved when the Chicxulub impact body ended the Mesozoic so abruptly), the invited speaker list certainly omits the paleontologists who crossed swords with Gerta and Norm in the past on the subject of how fast dinosaurs, ammonites and other mollusks, and microfossils died out. Where is Jan Smit, for instance? Perhaps to make the conference less than a one-sided paean to volcanism, some breadth to the invited speakers list?  I for one would be happy to be invited and show new information from K/Pg at Seymour Island, Antarctica; from Queen Charlottes and Nevada on the T/J (including a Manicouagan horizon from the former); new information from the Pacific basins of P/T age; and from our five years of work on the Givetian/Frasnian event in the Canning Basin, Australia.  I think that is all of them except the Ordovician?
Professor Peter D Ward
Dept of Biology
The University of Washington
Seattle, 98195
206-543-2962  ( Office )

On Tue, 6 Dec 2011, Norman MacLeod wrote:

> Dear All
> On March 27-29, 2013 London¹s Natural History Museum (NHM) will host an
> international, multi-disciplinary conference that brings together
> researchers from across the geological, geophysical, and biological
> disciplines to assess the state of research into the causes of mass
> extinction events. The main goal of this conference will be to evaluate the
> respective roles of volcanism, bolide impacts, sea level fluctuations and
> associated climate and environmental changes in major episodes of species
> extinction.
> The conference website can be accessed at:
> which includes information about the
> technical programme, invited speakers, registration, and contact
> information. This site also includes the conference's First Circular which
> can be downloaded as a pdf file. On the site's home page you can register
> for further circulars, indicate whether you're interested in contributing a
> presentation and provide a preliminary title. Both oral and poster
> presentations will be key parts of the conference.
> Attendance at the conference is limited due to the size of the NHM
> auditorium. So that the Organizing Committee can manage delegate numbers it
> is important that those interested in attending the conference express that
> interest by registering on the conference web site.
> Previous conferences on this topic have generated considerable interest
> among both the scientific community and the media. In addition to reviewing
> the physical and biotic evidence, this conference will assess the present
> status of data and interpretations bearing on different mass extinction
> causal hypotheses. From this discussion/debate the conference will promote
> a new, collaborative, interdisciplinary, community-wide approach to
> resolving outstanding problems in the field of mass extinction studies. The
> data and concepts presented and discussed in London will have broad
> implications that will extend throughout, and well beyond, the geosciences
> not the least because they will summarize the baseline data that will be
> necessary for understanding both ancient and modern species extinction
> events.
> We look forward to seeing you in London in 2013 for this event.
> For questions regarding this conference please contact: Gerta Keller
> gkeller at  or Norman MacLeod N.MacLeod at
> The conference organizing committee is:
> Gerta Keller Norman MacLeod, Andrew Kerr, Mike Widdowson, Vincent
> Courtillot, Ashok Sahni, Thierry Adatte
> ___________________________________________________________________
> Prof. Norman MacLeod
> Keeper of Palaeontology
> The Natural History Museum
> Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD
> (0)207 942-5204 (Office)
> (0)207 942-5546 (Fax)
> (Web Page)
> Department of Earth Sciences, University College London, Gower Street,
> London WC1E 6BT, UK
> Nanjing Institute of Geology & Palaeontology, Chinese Academy of Sciences,
> 39 Beijing Donglu, Nanjing, China
> ___________________________________________________________________
> _______________________________________________
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> Paleonet at

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