Any frequent reader of Eos has probably noticed fairly regular reports from annual meetings of a mysterious organization called the “Canadian Geophysical Union” (CGU). Yet even the most ardent observer of the Canadian scene may have been somewhat puzzled about whether CGU is striving to project the proverbial Canadian “low profile” or whether this organization simply hibernates during the long Canadian winters.

The explanation for CGU's relative obscurity is more prosaic. The organization, which was conceived some 15 years ago, was born with two umbilical cords. These tied it to its two “mother societies”: the Canadian Association of Physicists (CAP) and the Geological Association of Canada (GAC). These maternal ties were never cut, so CGU was never forced to stand on its own feet and to fend for itself. This act of maturity has now been completed—with some friendly help from the two parents—and CGU has become an independent society.