Houston Local Chapter of the AM

January 2006 Newsletter


Next Meeting:

Monday, January 30th, 2006


Meeting Location:

The Houston Museum of Natural Science

One Hermann Circle Drive, Houston, Texas 77030

Phone:  (713) 639-4629


Lower Level Conference Room:




From Main Lobby: Down the stairs to lowest level, cross the Fondren Discovery Room, and turn left in front of mummy display.


The Plan:

4:30 - 5 PM
: Our private meeting with Dr. Rapley in lower level conference room.

Take the main elevator to the ground floor, turn right, and it's the first door on the left.

5 - 6 PM: Reception & Climate Exhibition time.........

6 - 6:30 PM: Mickey - D's dinner time upstairs in the main lobby.

6:30 - 6:50 PM: Local chapter AMS meeting in lower level conference room (see above or newsletter for directions, please).

7 - 8 PM: Guest lecture by Dr. Rapley in the IMAX theater.





6:00 – 6:30 PM

(McDonald’s  Dinner: Main Floor)


6:30 – 6:50 PM

(Local Meeting: Lower Level Conf. Room)


7:00 PM

(Guest Lecture: Wortham IMAX Theatre)



Meeting’s Theme & Topic:


A Giant Awakening?

Global Climate Change and the Antarctic


Speaker: Chris Rapley, Ph.D., CBE, British Antarctic Survey



In recent years, two major glaciers in the Amundsen Sea sector of the West Antarctic ice sheet have shown rapid thinning. This has prompted scientists from the British Antarctic Survey, The University of Texas, and the National Science Foundation to embark on an airborne geophysical survey of the least visited and unknown areas of the continent to collect data from Pine Island and Thwaites glaciers.  Dr. Rapley will describe how the Antarctic is changing and the potential worldwide consequences, and will indicate how the international community plans to improve our understanding of ice sheet.  “As recently as five years ago we thought that the Antarctic was a Slumbering Giant.  But new results lead us to question this.  There is real cause for concern,” commented Dr. Rapley, Director of the British Antarctic Survey.

Sponsored by the British Consulate-General of Houston

(From HMNS website)



Notes from the President:


I hope this newsletter finds you and yours doing well and that you all are enjoying time with family and friends this holiday season.  Our Houston area has finally started having more seasonable weather after the warm and dry fall.  Take away the historic Christmas snow a year ago and the glancing blow by Rita, and the past 12 months would go down as quite benign.  The NWS has recorded only 6 tornadoes during the past year – all F1 or F0, and until our December 14 flood event over Houston, we had not had any significant flooding in the area since November ’04.   Just part of natural variability, most of us would agree – or is it partly due to changes going on in the climate? 


Maybe some insight on that question can be gained at our upcoming January meeting, where we are taking advantage of a presentation by a world leader in studies on climate change, particularly as it pertains to the Antarctic, Dr. Chris Rapley.  The lecture is part of the Houston Museum of Natural Science Distinguished Lecture Series. Although there is a fee to attend the lecture, we feel that the program is well worth it and sincerely hope you all will also.  See you in January!


Merry Christmas!



Your President,

Bill Read




Upcoming 2006 Conferences:



86th Annual AMS Meeting

January 29 - February 2, 2006, Atlanta, GA



2006 National Air Quality Conferences

5 – 8 February 2006, San Antonio, TX



27th Conference on Hurricanes and Tropical Meteorology

24 – 28 April 2006, Monterey, CA




Chapter Web-site: www.amshouston.org

National web-site: http://www.ametsoc.org/

Contact Information:

Feel free to contact any of the officers for comments, questions, suggestions or even additions to the newsletter.  We would appreciate hearing from you.


President Bill Read

Ph: 281-534-2157 (Ext:222)

email: bill.read@noaa.gov


Vice President Anthony Yanez

Ph: 713-778-8950



Secretary Patrick Blood

Ph: 281-337-5074 (Ext:304)

email: pgblood@yahoo.com


Treasurer Brian Planz

Ph: 713-430-7100

email: penst8wx@houston.rr.com


Or e-mail the Local Chapter: houstonams@houston.rr.com


E-mail is Preferred:

The use of email helps us cut down on costs.  If it is available to you, we would like to add you to our e-mailing list.  If you have changed your address, prefer another address, or no longer want to receive this newsletter, please let us know by filling out the form and giving it to any officer. 


Brought to you by……Houston AMS Chapter ’05-’06 Sponsors:







We are looking for additional sponsors for the 2005-2006 Houston Local Chapter of the AMS.  Please contact one of our officers above if you or your company would like to sponsor the newsletter.


Dues/Address Change:

Don't forget to pay your $10 annual dues that were due this past September. 

Please include dues with the form below and turn it into any officer. If you prefer, you can mail the form and check to our Treasurer, Brian Planz. 

Checks should be made out to:  Houston Chapter of the American Meteorological Society

Send to:

Brian Planz

c/o Wilkens Weather Technologies, Inc.

2925 Briar Park Drive, 7th Floor

Houston, TX 77042

Include Below Information with Dues or Address Change.  Please mail to Treasurer or give to an Officer.




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Houston Chapter of the American Meteorological Society

c/o Patrick Blood, Houston/Galveston National Weather Service, 1353 FM 646, Suite 202, Dickinson, TX 77539