A renowned marine scientist, who has led more than 40 expeditions to some of the last wild places in the ocean, will share insights that helped establish the protection of more than 6.5 million square kilometres of ocean at a public lecture at The University of Western Australia.
“The Wen Family Chair in Conservation Spring Public Lecture provides a unique opportunity to bring ocean leaders to Western Australia, sharing their experiences as we build ocean resilience.”Professor Jessica Meeuwig, UWA Ocean's Institute and Wen Family Chair in Conservation
Guest speaker and Chief Scientist for the National Geographic Society’s Pristine Seas program, Dr Alan Friedlander has spent more than 12,000 hours underwater and conducted research from coral reefs to the poles and travelled in submersibles to depths of thousands of metres.
Image: Dr Alan Friedlander, Chief Scientist, National Geographic Society’s Pristine Seas.
Inaugural Wen Family Chair in Conservation, Professor Jessica Meeuwig’s UWA Marine Futures Lab partnered with Pristine Seas in 2014 on an expedition to Palau, which was the first time the program used mid-water baited remote underwater video systems to document the status of open-ocean wildlife such as tunas, sharks and billfishes.
Since then, UWA Pristine Seas Research Fellow, Dr Chris Thompson, has participated in 20 expeditions to some of the most remote locations on the planet conducting the mid-water sampling.
Image: Dr Chris Thompson, UWA Pristine Seas Research Fellow.
Dr Thompson said the mid-water research marked a major contribution to the Pristine Seas’ data on shallow and deep habitats, down to more than 3,000 metres.
“These expeditions allowed us to document over 31,000 individuals representing 180 oceanic species,” he said.
“Mid-water sampling has substantially expanded our understanding of ocean wildlife in these remote regions — and our understanding of the impacts of human activities on this wildlife.”
Dr Alan Friedlander will talk about the team’s extensive research and the importance of protecting the ocean’s vital places, at the Wen Family Chair in Conservation Spring Public Lecture on Wednesday 18 October from 6pm to 8pm at The University Club of WA Auditorium.
“Increasing overexploitation, habitat degradation, pollution, and global warming are depleting ocean biodiversity and bringing the ocean to a tipping point, beyond which we may never recover,” Dr Friedlander said.
“There is now an urgent and critical need to increase the support for ocean conservation so that both people and nature can thrive.”
Professor Jessica Meeuwig said the event will be a one-of-a-kind learning experience.
“The Wen Family Chair in Conservation Spring Public Lecture provides a unique opportunity to bring ocean leaders to Western Australia, sharing their experiences as we build ocean resilience,” she said.
This lecture is supported by Wen Giving, The Jock Clough Marine Foundation, Forrest Research Foundation and the Oceans Institute and you can register for free tickets here.
Doug MacLaurin (UWA Media & Advisor) 0418 252 436