Press Release Research Expedition, PS 120- SoNoAT outbound from Falkland, Port Stanley | POGO

Press Release Research Expedition, PS 120- SoNoAT outbound from Falkland, Port Stanley

Changing Oceans Changing Future
Twenty-five young scientists and 15 experts from 25 nations have set off from Stanley in the Falkland Islands on an international expedition on board the RV POLARSTERN. The mission of this ‘Floating Training School´, which is a collaboration between the Partnership for Observation of the Global Ocean (POGO), The Nippon Foundation, Japan and the Alfred Wegener Institute, Germany, is to train tomorrow’s ocean experts, and to assess the state of the Atlantic Ocean (within the framework of the UN Sustainable Development Goals 13 and 14).
“In order to ensure a sustainable ocean future, we need to train young scientists from all over the world to become ocean experts,” says chief scientist and Ocean Expert, Prof Karen Wiltshire. “This cruise will not only teach participants how to observe and measure the changes we see in the ocean, ranging from warming to micro plastic pollution, but will also consider ways to tackle these problems and manage the ocean.”
POGO and the Nippon Foundation are committed to training new experts for all ocean nations, with particular focus on capacity development of ocean expertise in developing nations. Dr. Sophie Seeyave, CEO of POGO, is “delighted that this third Floating Training School on RV Polarstern was received with such interest. We had 800 applications for 25 training places, the majority of which came from women.” Professor Peter Croot from the National University of Ireland, Galway, will be overseeing the training on board.
The scientists and crew onboard RV Polarstern will deploy measuring devices for temperature, salinity, micro-organisms and pollutants, including micro-plastics, in order to determine the characteristics of the water bodies encountered along the transect from the South to North Atlantic. These data will be combined with satellite and atmospheric imagery to place the route into the current global context. During the cruise, in collaboration with the Argo programme, the ship will deploy five drifting Argo floats in the South Atlantic to follow the ocean currents.
“With the current rate of climate change and the average measured 0.8 oC temperature increase in the global ocean, and its consequences for eg. sea level rise, there is no time to lose with regard to mitigation strategies” recommends renowned climate expert Peter Lemke, who extensively worked for the World Climate Research Programm and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
Enroute to Port Stanley to embark on the RV Polarstern, the science team stopped off in Punta Arenas, Chile and held an interesting two day workshop on climate change with young local science students from the University of the Magallanes. Upon arrival in Port Stanley the group were also pleased to meet up with local scientists from the South Atlantic Environmental Research Institute (SAERI) in the Falklands to discuss issues impacting their region.
During the four weeks at sea, scientists on board will hold live video discussions with students from 15 different schools in Ireland, Germany, UK, and Japan, and look forward to engaging these young people in ocean and climate science topics. Our experts fully support the Fridays4Future youth movement in their demand for a sustainable climate future: we are Scientists4Future.
The Earth is an Ocean Planet. Oceans are the energy storage units of our planet. All water is linked to the dynamics of the Ocean, and shifts in Ocean temperature and function affect the future of humankind. The upcoming United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) highlights the need for our future ocean experts to be trained in the open ocean, and for the recommendations of these early career researchers to be heard now. When we reach Bremerhaven at the end of June we will have 25 newly trained oceanographers and a mass of new information on the state of the ocean which we will publicly share.
More Info:
Coordinator of Nippon-POGO Center of Excellence
Peter Croot, NUI Galway,
Fiona Beckman POGO,
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Partnership for Observation of the Global Ocean is a charitable incorporated organisation registered and regulated by the Charity Commission of England and Wales, No 1171692