Visiting Iceland for the 2nd Marine SABRES General Assembly

Marine SABRES partners in Hafnarfjörður

On October 2-5, 2023, Marine SABRES partners met in Hafnarfjörður, Iceland, for their second General Assembly, one year after the kick-off meeting in Cork, Ireland. Members from each of our 21 partner organisations met together at Hafrannsóknastofnun, the Marine and Freshwater Research Institute of Iceland (MFRI), for three days of productive discussions on the research activities partners have accomplished so far and tasks yet to come.

LifeWatch ERIC joined the meeting with the participation of Cristina Huertas-Olivares (International Initiatives & Projects Manager at LifeWatch ERIC SSO, Seville, Spain), and its LifeWatching WebTV

LifeWatching WebTV joined the Marine SABRES 2nd General Assembly to record audio-visual material for Marine SABRES’ Video Documentary and some WebTV videos, while conducting a first series of interviews with WP leaders, DAs leaders, project partners and some local stakeholders of the fishery sector based in the Arctic Demonstration Area. The local partners and stakeholders made a general presentation of pelagic fisheries in Iceland, illustrating its history and importance, how it has changed over time, what are the most important fish stocks etc, while exploring its economic and environmental challenges. The video shootings took place during the three-day meeting at MFRI, and at the Icelandic Maritime Museum and Ocean Cluster, in Reykjavik. Moreover, some video shootings of the naturalistic surroundings near Reykjavik will be realised.

The driving force of this first year has been stakeholder engagement in the three ‘demonstration areas’ of the project: Macaronesia, the Arctic-Northeast Atlantic, and the Tuscan Archipelago. As a project, Marine SABRES is explicitly designed with the input from the community at its core, rather than using a top-down approach. By inviting stakeholders into the decision-making process, the project ensures that their opinions and perspectives are central to the work being conducted and inform project outputs.

Within each demonstration area, Marine SABRES research focuses specifically on a local issue. In Macaronesia, for example, the research is centred around biodiversity restoration and the benefits of ecotourism, while in the Tuscan Archipelago, the work examines the impacts of tourism on seagrass meadows. 

At Hafrannsóknastofnun, insights from project partners in the Arctic-Northeast Atlantic area on shared management challenges for the fishing industry in Iceland, Greenland, and the Faroe Islands, where overfishing is dangerously high and the ranges of important fish stocks such as herring, mackerel, and blue whiting are shifting due to climate change, were presented and discussed. Some local stakeholders of the Arctic demonstration area, Lísa Anne Libungan of Fisheries Iceland, and Thor Sigfusson from Iceland Ocean Cluster attended the meeting. Partners had also the opportunity to receive a tour from Thor of the Ocean Cluster House, a unique space in Reykjavik for entrepreneurs and businesses in marine industries. 

Marine SABRES look forward to updating you on the progress of the project, as partners identify opportunities to better implement ecosystem-based management and develop pathways to transformation for a biodiverse & sustainable future!

LifeWatch-ERIC, LALINET and ACTRIS-ERIC bridging meeting: towards a new future in Earth-atmosphere interactions research 

LifeWatch ERIC meeting in Granada

In the context of the SmartEcoMountains project, which aims to create a Thematic Centre to expand the knowledge on the functioning of Sierra Nevada ecosystems in global change scenarios, LifeWatch ERIC held a meeting with LALINET (Latin American Lidar NETwork) and ACTRIS (Aerosols, Clouds, and Trace gases Research Infrastructure Network) to foster collaboration in the future. The meeting took place in Granada from October 17 to 20, to exchange and transfer knowledge to identify future collaborative opportunities among these three entities.

Researchers from various Latin American countries, including Colombia, Chile, Bolivia, Argentina, and Brazil, attended the meeting to collaborate and design joint actions to understand better Earth-Atmosphere interactions using lidar techniques.

On the first day of the meeting, each network showcased its infrastructures, capabilities, needs, and interests for future collaborations. A major topic of discussion was vertical signal data processing. ACTRIS-ERIC presented their Centre for Aerosol Remote Sensing (CARS) and other tools that sparked interest in exploring future implementations for lidar data processing. Two distinct processing tools for atmospheric profiling were introduced, such as the Lidar Processing Pipeline (LPP), an open-source lidar signal analysis software developed in Latin America. 

The participants also engaged in a lively discussion on including Artificial Intelligence within the vertical profiling data processing framework, recognising its potential to enhance these processes. LifeWatch-ERIC offered valuable resources to enrich the collaboration, including blockchain for data traceability to ensure transparency and security and to develop cutting-edge virtual research environments (VREs) to support research and management of the infrastructures. 

The meeting explored possibilities for applying to joint proposals on European calls, such as Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions: Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE) and other possible international cooperation programmes.