B.Met, M.EconGeol, Grad.Dip Prof Management
Geology and Earth Sciences
Alan combines a life-long passion for travel, mountains and geology with his 40+ years experience as a mining professional to bring a unique perspective on earth sciences and how we better understand and develop the natural resources of which we are stewards.
As a geometallurgist with a bachelor’s degree in metallurgy and a masters in geology, his work covers the alchemy of how we convert the minerals and metals well-hidden in the rocks to the actual products we use in everyday life.
He was born in north-east England, and through his work in the international mining industry has lived in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, New Caledonia and Spain, and has been recently living in Peru. He has worked in every continent except Antarctica, and has been fortunate enough to have worked in such diverse countries as Russia, China, Congo, Mauritania and most of the South American countries. He has a strong appreciation of not just the technical aspects of earth sciences but also the human/cultural aspects of developing our global resources.
He has mastered Spanish, resuscitated his schoolboy French and also achieved some understanding of Brazilian Portuguese.
His lectures can be both destination appropriate and thematic, covering such things as why geology is important, how mining can be sustainable and climate change; as well as more destination specific aspects like the South American Andes and the volcanoes and glaciers of the Pacific Rim.
Alan has delivered lectures and presented papers at international conferences and is a seasoned cruiser, along with his wife Kerrie-Anne.
His lectures cover many themes including geology, mining, gold-mining ancient and modern, volcanoes of the world, glaciology and climate change, some of which are listed below.
Geology Matters –
Its crucial importance in understanding our global resources in both time and space
The UK – a geology that changed the world (series of 3)
New thoughts on why a small island has had such an influence on the rest of the world
Mining – its life cycle and place in sustainable economies
From the finding and mining, through the bashing, mashing and hashing of metallurgy to the minding of the environment
Sub-sea mining in the Pacific
Smokers – black and white
Just a dream?
Myths and Realities
Gold mining and salmon fishing!
Sand mining, some Australian examples
The Golden Fleece – fact or fiction?
A brief history of gold mining
Gold mining in Spain 2000 years ago
China mining, a study in contrasts
and New school
Australian gold mining
The early gold rushes
Modern large scale gold mining
Iceland – A Land of Fire and Ice (series of 2)
A country being torn apart
Volcanic ash clouds – a new take on Icelandic noir!
Fire and Ice
Kamchatka Peninsula, Eastern Siberia
Volcanoes and gold, ICBM’s too!
Birds that winter in Australia
Volcanoes of New Zealand and White Island
A geothermal hot spot
Growth of a new island
Volcanoes of Hawaii
A hot spot on the move
Lavas - deadly but at least slow
Volcanoes of the Pacific North-West- past and present
Crater Lake, Oregon
Mt St Helens - explosive mass destruction
Alaskan / Yukon Gold Mining
Gold rush days
Modern gold mining
South American Andes – volcanoes, mines and alpacas (series of 2)
Plate tectonics – what are they all about?
Volcanoes of the Andes
Mysteries of the alti-plano
New Zealand – geology writ large
Volcanoes, earthquakes and glaciers
Glaciers of South America
The Chilean Lake District
The Beagle Channel
Natural or man-made?
Long hot summers
What can we do?
The oldest living thing
Turns archaeological dating on its head