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4th International Congress on Arsenic in the Environment
The biennial congress on Arsenic in the Environment is the innovation of Congress Series Organisers Prof Prosun Bhattacharya from KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Prof Jochen Bundschuh from the International Society of Groundwater for Sustainable Development (ISGSD) and the University of Southern Queensland (USQ).
Following the previous congress themes ‘Natural Arsenic in Groundwaters of Latin America’ (Mexico City, Mexico, 2006); ‘Arsenic from Nature to Humans’ (Valencia, Spain, 2008); and ‘Arsenic in the Geosphere and Human Diseases’ (Tainan, Taiwan, 2010), it was decided that the 4th International Congress (As2012) would come down under to Cairns, Australia on the 22-27 July 2012 with the theme ‘Understanding the Geological-Medical Interface of Arsenic’.
JKTech Pty Ltd, the Congress Event Organiser, coordinated the congress over a two-year period with the assistance of Congress Chairs Prof Jack Ng from the National Research Centre for Environmental Toxicology (EnTox), Assoc Prof Barry Noller from the Centre for Mined Land Rehabilitation (CMLR) at the Sustainable Minerals Institute (SMI) at the University of Queensland, and Prof Ravi Naidu from the Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of the Environment (CRC CARE).
The congress commenced with a cocktail Welcome Event held poolside at The Sebel Cairns, before an early rise the next morning to kick off proceedings. Prof Ravi Naidu (CRC CARE) was the first plenary speaker to present, followed by delegates splitting into two streams (geological and medical/health) for the remainder of the day.
In the evening, attendees were lead through to the beautiful ballroom of the Hilton Cairns for the Congress Dinner where they were welcomed to the country by Henrietta Marrie, a Gimuy Walubarra Yidinji woman, and then treated to a didgeridoo performance by Wunba from Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park.
Three more congress days ensued with plenary presentations by Prof Chien-Jen Chen (Academia Sinica) and Dr D Kirk Nordstrom (U.S. Geological Survey), eighteen invited keynote speakers, fourteen invited international speakers, and a vast array of oral and poster presentations. The papers presented covered a diverse range of themes including geological; medical/health; remediation and policy; analytical; and a handful of special sessions.
With over 150 registered to attend the congress from 30 different countries across 6 continents, a ‘day off’ was scheduled mid-congress to make the most of the host city. An organised field trip saw 115 attendees taken on a private charter navigated by the Quicksilver Group to the Great Barrier Reef to explore the underwater world. Others enjoyed the sunshine and surrounds of Cairns and tropical North Queensland.
Credit goes to CRC CARE - the Principal Partner for As2012; the Congress Series Organisers; the Congress Chairs; the Congress Session Chairs; the Scientific Program Committee; and the International Committee. Appreciation also to AusAID for providing financial support for delegates from developing countries to attend the congress. Best wishes to the host city Buenos Aires, Argentina for As2014!
As2012 congress proceedings (ISBN-13: 978-0-415-63763-3) can be purchased online via www.jktech.com.au
JKTech Pty Ltd - As2012 Congress Event Organiser
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