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IAGC - International Association of GeoChemistry
Water-Rock Interaction (WRI) Working Group

Working Group History and PurposeWRI

The First International Symposium on Water Rock Interaction (WRI-1) was convened on 9-14 September, 1974 in Prague (Czech Republic), with Dr. Tomas Paces as Secretary General.  Nearly 150 participants, including many students from 21 countries, attended the four days of technical sessions. Close to 100 also visited thermal and mineral springs on a three-day field trip to northwestern Bohemia.  The combination of excellent technical sessions, printed proceedings, and interesting and well-organized field trips lasting several days, together with enjoyable social and cultural programs for the scientists and the accompanying members created an atmosphere of informality and easy communication among the participants.

The idea for a Working Group on Water-Rock Interaction (WRI) within the International Association of GeoChemistry (IAGC) originated with the late Prof. Mikhail G. Valyashko, who held the Chair of Geochemistry at Lomonsov State University, Moscow (USSR). During the International Symposium on Hydrogeochemistry and Biogeochemistry (Tokyo, Japan, September 1970), he organized a small group of interested geochemists and proposed setting up six working groups, including WRI to “study water-rock interaction under various temperature and pressure conditions, compile key programs, develop methods, and determine transportation forms of components.” The late Donald E. White (USA) was appointed the first Chairman of the Working Group on WRI. He initiated a worldwide mailing campaign that resulted in the creation of nine Interest Groups that served WRI well for more than a decade.  During the 24th IGC (Montreal, Canada), Drs. White and Hitchon convened an informal meeting of WRI (known as WRI-0) on 23 August 1972, and 16 people met to discuss the future of WRI, including Earl Ingerson (President, IAGC), Ken Sugawara (Secretary, IAGC) and Valyashko.  Josef Cadek (Czech Republic) presented a proposal suggested by Tomas Paces to hold WRI-1 in Prague. WRI-1 would set the focus needed for the next three decades by launching a series of triennial WRI Symposia, which became the main function of this Working Group. Success of this working group can be attributed to the developement of an informal format that attracts students and the leading geochemists, geologists, hydrologists and other earth scientists from many developed and developing countries to commune on a broad field of science. The field trips, the social and cultural programs for the scientists and the accompanying members result in creating an atmosphere of informality and easy communication among the participants. Cooperative projects and deep friendships have developed between scientists from many countries. Scientists who attend one of the meetings quickly get hooked, because WRI has a very contagious spirit, that we define as “water-rock-human interactions.”

Water-Rock Interaction Symposia

Symposium
Year
Participants
Venue
Secretary General
WRI-15
2016
Évora (Portugal)
José Manuel Marques
WRI-14
2013
Avignon (France)
Pierpaolo Zuddas
WRI-13
2010
Guanajuato (México)
Thomas Kretzschmar
WRI-12
2007
Kunming, Yunnan (China)
Yanxing Wan
WRI-11
2004
341
Saratoga Springs (USA)
Susan Brantley
WRI-10
2001
480
Cagliari, Sardinia (Italy)
Luca Fanfani
WRI-9
1998
287
Taupo (New Zealand)
Brian Robinson
WRI-8
1995
260
Vladivostock (Russia)
Oleg Chudaev
WRI-7
1992
576
Park City (USA)
Yousif Kharaka
WRI-6
1989
350
Malvern (United Kingdom)
Mike Edmunds
WRI-5
1986
250
Reykjavik (Iceland)
Halldor Armannsson
WRI-4
1983
210
Misasa (Japan)
Hitoshi Sakai
WRI-3
1980
145
Edmonton (Canada)
Brian Hitchon
WRI-2
1977
236
Strasbourg (France)
Yves Tardy
WRI-1
1974
148
Prague (Czechoslovakia)
Tomas Paces

 

Working Group Chairmen

Chairperson Period Country
Thomas Kretzschmar 2013 - present Mexico
Halldór Ármannsson 2007 - 2013 Iceland
Yousif Kharaka 2001-2007 USA
Mike Edmunds 1992-2001 UK
Hitoshi Sakai 1986-1992 Japan
Brian Hitchon 1974-1986 Canada
Donald White 1970-1974 USA

 

Contact Information

Thomas Kretzschmar
Geology Department CICESE
MEXICO
tkretzsc@cicese.mx

 

 

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