Learning from the Meadows: Pathways for seagrass conservation and restoration

Learning from the Meadows: Pathways for seagrass conservation and restoration

We need to stop, and ideally reverse, the rapid and continued decline of seagrass meadows. Doing so requires placing a greater value on these ecosystems as well as employing an ecosystem-based approach to management. In some cases, actively restoring lost seagrass meadows may be appropriate.

This webinar will explore seagrass conservation and restoration policies and projects from around the world. We aim to showcase innovative techniques, share lessons learnt, and identify common success factors.

The webinar will feature expert presentations and a panel discussion. There will be opportunities for participants to both ask questions and engage in discussions.

Scroll to see the programme details and speakers for this event.

DATE & TIME

Wednesday, November 30th
09:30 - 11:30 CET

LOCATION

Microsoft Teams (Online)

EVENT TYPE

Webinar

LANGUAGE

English

PROGRAMME DETAILS

09:30 

Welcome and introduction

Moderator: Dr. Karine Gagnon, Institute of Marine Research

09:40 

Seagrass conservation in West Africa: the ResilienSEA project

Omar Sanneh, Department of Parks and Wildlife Management, The Gambia

09:55 

Seagrass connectivity and conservation in Southeast Asia

Dr. Siti Maryam Yaakub, DHI Group

10:10

Eelgrass restoration using shoots: The ZORRO project 

Dr. Eduardo Infantes and Dr. Per Moksnes, University of Gothenburg Sweden

10:25

Eelgrass restoration using seeds: Lessons from Project Seagrass in Wales

Dr. Richard Unsworth, Project Seagrass / Swansea University Wales

10:40

Panel discussion: Seagrass conservation and restoration going forward

Eli Rinde, Omar Sanneh, Siti Maryam Yaakub, Per Moksnes, Richard Unsworth, Peter Haugan

11:10

Closing comments
Peter Haugan, Institute of Marine Research

11:15

Breakout room discussions

Speakers

Additional speaker biographies coming soon

Dr. Karine Gagnon
Researcher, Institute of Marine Research

Karine Gagnon is a marine ecologist who works at the Norwegian Institute of Marine Research. She is interested in the biodiversity and functioning of coastal ecosystems. She is currently involved in research on seagrass ecosystems in Norway and around the world, focused on understanding their biodiversity and ecosystem services, and how to best ensure that we conserve and restore these important ecosystems.

Dr. Eli Rinde
Senior Researcher, Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA)

Eli Rinde is a marine biologist and works as a senior researcher at Norwegian Institute for Water Research. She loves exploring the blue forests by diving and snorkling and has more than 30 years of experience from ecological studies of kelp forests and seagrass beds. Main activities include mapping of their distribution and ecological state, as well as through field experiments investigating the effects of climate change and other human impact on their distribution, state and the interactions with key species.

Omar Sanneh
Wildlife Conservation Officer, Department of Parks and Wildlife Management, The Gambia

Omar Sanneh is the Head of Research and Development Unit of the Department of Parks and Wildlife Management, under the Ministry of Environment Climate Change and Natural Resources in The Gambia. Mr. Sanneh is the focal point of ResilienSEA project in The Gambia, where he leads seagrass education and conservation efforts. Mr. Sanneh has immensely contributed to seagrass conservation in the subregion through capacity building, training, scientific research, communication, advocacy and partnership and among others. Through the support of UNEP ICRI Small Grants, Mr. Sanneh is currently implementing the region's first-ever community-led seagrass restoration program, ‘’Ba Nyamo Tanko”, meaning “Conserving Seagrass“ in Mandinka.

Dr. Siti Maryam Yaakub
Principal Environmental Consultant, Head of Projects (Climate & Ecological Resilience)
DHI Group

Dr. Siti Maryam Yaakub is a marine ecologist and works across tropical marine habitats, particularly in mangroves, coral reefs, and seagrass ecosystems. Her work and research interests broadly lie in the areas of ecological restoration, impact assessments, and environmental planning and management. Her specific interest is in using seagrass habitats as a model system for understanding ecological thresholds to stress, ecosystem maintenance, the effects of human activities on the marine environment. Dr. Siti’s other interests include using science-based management and tools in conservation planning, citizen science initiatives, and the recolonisation of novel habitats. Her recent work has been focused on nature-based solutions for climate adaptation and mitigation in coastal marine systems.

Dr. Eduardo Infantes
Researcher, University of Gothenburg Sweden

Dr. Eduardo Infantes is a researcher at the Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences at the University of Gothenburg. His research group at the Seagrass Ecology Lab examines bio-physical interactions that affect benthic ecosystems with key projects focusing on coastal restoration, ecological feedbacks, tipping points and plant-sediment-flow interactions. He is also a part of the research group ZORRO (ZOsteRa RestOration), which consists of marine ecologists, environmental legal scholars and environmental economists. The goal of ZORRO is to improve the environmental status of shallow coastal ecosystems through the development of new methods for the management and restoration of seagrass habitats in Sweden.

Dr. Per Moksnes
Senior scientist, University of Gothenburg Sweden

Per Moksnes is a senior scientist at the Department of Marine Sciences and the Institute for the Marine Environment at the University of Gothenburg. He leads the Interdisciplinary research group ZORRO (ZOsteRa RestOration) that focus on questions related to management and restoration of eelgrass ecosystems in Sweden, in close collaboration with environmental managers. He is presently involved in developing new methods to restore eelgrass meadows after regime shifts, and to use remote sensing techniques and genetic methods to map and manage eelgrass along the Swedish coasts.

DR. RICHARD UNSWORTH
Founding Director, Project Seagrass /
Associate Professor, Swansea University Wales

Richard's expertise lie in the ecological structuring processes of marine systems and the implications of these systems for society. This focuses primarily on the interrelationships between foundation species, habitat, and associated productive fauna (mainly fish). He is particularly interested in the consequences of cross-scale environmental changes on seagrass meadows functioning and the implications of this for global food security and other ecosystem services. His current research projects include the impact of climate variability on seagrass ecosystems, social-ecological systems analysis, ocean acidification and seagrass, and the resilience and ecosystem service provision of seagrass.

Peter Haugan
Programme Director, Institute of Marine Research

Peter is Programme Director at IMR and professor of oceanography at University of Bergen. He has broad interests ranging from ocean carbon and climate to ocean science-policy interaction. He is also currently co-chair of the Expert Group for the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy and member of the Board of the NBFN.