European AMU Conference: Protecting our oceans, the challenge of European leadership in the world

16 June 2021

The interactions between marine sciences, public policies and society will be the subject of the Second European Conference of Aix-Marseille University, under the high patronage of Mrs. Maria da Graça Carvalho, Member of the European Parliament. Scientific Coordinator : Prof. Richard Sempéré, Director of the Mediterranean Institute of Oceanography (MIO), Marseille (France).

The Agenda is now on line.

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Understanding the past, present and future impacts of human activity on the oceans is a vital issue. Climate change, overexploitation of ecosystem services as well as flows of marine pollutants have led to irreversible changes, threatening marine biodiversity and with repercussions on human life. There is an urgent need to take a step forward in understanding the data collected and deciphered by scientists in order to create a political dynamic capable of transforming the situation on a global scale. Europe's ambition is to take global leadership on the challenges facing the oceans. Marine science will provide public authorities with more accurate information, sustainable and innovative responses capable of assessing the progress made by European Union initiatives. In the wake of World Oceans Day 2021, this conference will be a contribution to the achievement of the European Union's objectives, including UN Sustainable Development Goal 14.

Leading scientists from Aix-Marseille University, from Europe and elsewhere, will present their contribution in dialogue with European institutions and intergovernmental bodies.

Combating the disruption of marine ecosystems caused by climate change: during this sequence, scientists will address the impacts of climate change on marine species and examine the extent to which our production and consumption systems are leading to the sixth mass extinction of biodiversity, if immediate and ambitious measures are not taken.
The challenge of contaminant dispersion: the second session will address the impact of known and emerging pollutants on marine ecosystems and food security. The speakers will discuss the challenges of a more refined knowledge in this field, will evaluate the effectiveness of policies to reduce pollutants and will discuss ways to reduce their spread.

In these two sessions, political decision-makers in dialogue with scientists will address the challenges of intergovernmental negotiations conducted within the framework of the United Nations. They will also discuss the role of science and innovation in the identification of promising and replicable solutions, particularly through European programs. The need for a science/society interface is a current and decisive topic that will be addressed throughout the conference.


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