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SAEON @ COP17

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The SA Agulhas, South Africa’s polar research and supply vessel, embarked on a pre-COP17 voyage, with SAEON’s Dr Lara Atkinson and Thomas Mtontsi on board (Picture: Mthuthuzeli Gulekana)

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During the voyage Dr Lara Atkinson presented an overview of SAEON and its activities and highlighted some of the projects initiated by SAEON.

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SAEON organised pre-COP17 events for learners in five locations across the country to raise awareness about environmental change.

 

SAEON is participating in a range of satellite events of the 17th Conference of Parties (COP17) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) currently being held in Durban.

South Africa Climate Change Reponse Expo

Visit the SAEON stand to learn more about SAEON and its long-term monitoring projects in the face of climate change

You will find us at No 74 in the South Africa Climate Change Response (SACCR) Expo precinct. SAEON’s Sue van Rensburg and Beate Holscher are looking forward to welcoming you and sharing information about SAEON and its activities.

Pre-COP17 voyage onboard the SA Agulhas

South Africa’s hosting of COP17 provided a unique opportunity to highlight the important role that oceans play in climate.

The Department of Environmental Affairs invited marine academics, scientists and technicians to share their sea-going research experiences with government officials, journalists and students so that research being conducted on our oceans can be broadcast to a wider audience.

The SA Agulhas, South Africa’s polar research and supply vessel, embarked on a pre-COP17 voyage, departing from Cape Town to Durban on Saturday, 12 November and arriving back in Cape Town on 21 November 2011.

The pre-COP17 voyage showcased three decades of South Africa’s achievements in the Southern Ocean and Antarctic region where the important research that has been conducted contributes to the understanding of the influence of oceans on our climate.

The voyage comprised four legs; Cape Town to Port Elizabeth, Cape Town to Durban; Port Elizabeth to Durban and Durban to Cape Town. SAEON’s Dr Lara Atkinson and Thomas Mtontsi were invited to participate in the second leg – from Cape Town to Durban. Read their report here .

Dr Lara Atkinson presented an overview of SAEON and its activities and highlighted some of the projects initiated by SAEON. She explained how these projects will provide valuable long-term data to help detect, predict and react to changes in the marine environment.

Pre-COP17 schools’ awareness initiative

South Africa’s youth are likely to experience the full impact of climate change in their lifetimes. COP17 will be very influential in how nations work together in order to address the negative aspects of climate change on people’s livelihoods and on civil infrastructure and economic development.

Against this background, SAEON organised pre-COP17 schools’ awareness events at Phalaborwa, Cape Town, Kimberley, Pietermaritzburg and Grahamstown where the six SAEON Nodes are located. The purpose of the initiative was to raise awareness among schools about environmental change, and the causes and impacts of the change on the South African and global environments. The significance of the COP17 Congress taking place was highlighted at these events.

The initiative was sponsored by the Department of Science and Technology and the Applied Centre for Earth Systems Science (ACCESS).

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