Experts add to ‘unique’ setting

Strong Program Makes Rio a Hit

Once again, Rio delivered.

The 2009 AAPG International Conference and Exhibition, held in November in Rio de Janeiro, recaptured the excitement of AAPG’s first conference there in 1998 by offering a compelling blend of top-notch technical presentations, expert industry analyses, cutting-edge technology and the always-colorful Brazilian culture.

“Rio 2009 was a tremendous success,” said conference vice chair Marcio Mello. “We have been receiving a huge amount of comments, from all around the planet, about how Rio made the difference.”

Figures (still unofficial at press time) showed about 2,080 people from more than 50 countries attended, making it the third largest ICE of all time (behind Perth’s 2,626 and the first Rio meeting, 2,214).

But more than the numbers, Rio will be remembered for “the fantastic and robust technical sessions,” Mello said. “The number of papers about the pre-salt and South Atlantic petroleum geology was unique.

“The community is saying that it was the best ever.”

Sessions dealing with pre-salt and South Atlantic margin topics were indeed filled to capacity – a special panel session on “Giant Fields of the Decade” also drew a lot of attention – but the largest gathering was for a plenary session on “Opportunities in a High-Stakes Environment,” which drew a standing-room only crowd to a large banquet hall.

The session boasted several big industry names, all offering their insights and perspectives of the current and future state of affairs for the profession. That panel included:

  • Jose Sergio Gabrielli de Azevedo, chairman, Petrobras (who also drew a large gathering for a post-panel press conference).
  • Mark Albers, senior vice president ExxonMobil Corporation.
  • Amin Nasser, senior vice president E&P, Saudi Aramco.
  • Yves-Louis Darricarrere, president E&P, Total.
  • Andrew Gould, chairman, Schlumberger.

“Never before at an international AAPG meeting had so many CEOs and managers appeared together,” Mello said. “This was unique.”

AAPG’s next ICE will be held Sept. 12-15 at the TELUS Convention Center in Calgary, Canada.

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