Message from the Director

EGI wishes everyone a happy and prosperous new year as we enter 2019 with gratitude for your continued support and partnership.  We look forward to a productive and exciting year in which you’ll see several EGI research projects advance and our innovative Research Services bring ever greater value in helping your business answer the scientific questions that drive the energy industry.

Reviewing 2018, we are proud of many milestones and high points.  In May, EGI hosted one of our largest ever CA Technical Conferences in Salt Lake City, Utah. The highly interactive event was an opportunity for members to connect with EGI scientists, staff, and colleagues while engaging in a series of technical presentations, short courses, and field courses with some of the foremost experts in their field. In June, the U.S. Department of Energy announced the selection of the University of Utah’s EGI-based Frontier Observatory for Research in Geothermal Energy (FORGE) field laboratory to receive up to $140 million in funding over the next five years. The award represents the largest ever single grant award to the University of Utah.  Throughout the year, EGI staff were honored and recognized for their achievements and contributions to their fields.

As students returned to classes in autumn and the days got shorter, it seemed things at EGI kept apace, as I was invited to join newly-inaugurated University of Utah President, Ruth Watkins, on the last leg of her “Ruth 66” road trip tour of Utah. President Watkins spent most of the summer and early fall visiting the different areas of Utah and getting to know the people, resources, and concerns of every corner of the state.  That included Eastern Utah and Uintah County, where much of the state’s oil and gas economy is based, and a significant contributor to US energy exploration and production.  I joined President Watkins on this last leg of the tour to meet with local leaders, businesses, and industry to learn how the University can be a valuable part of the conversation and support the economy of the region, which integrates a number of EGI’s CA members.  We had the pleasure to visit Newfield Exploration’s Myton, UT operation, where President Watkins and the entire University delegation received an excellent tour of the operation and had the opportunity to engage with Newfield staff.

Interacting with EGI members ‘on the ground’ is a valuable reminder to the University, and to EGI, of how important and productive these relationships are. We’re grateful to Newfield and to President Watkins for the unique opportunity.

University of Utah President Ruth Watkins and University representatives, including EGI Director Raymond Levey (third from right) "flash the U" along with staff of Newfield Exploration's Myton, UT operation.