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[Press release] A better protection of marine megafauna through social networks and artificial intelligence

Scientists from three joint research units (MARBECENTROPIE and LIRMM) have just published a study using the latest technological advances to identify charismatic species of the marine megafauna of New Caledonia: dugongs, turtles and sharks. This work, entitled “Leveraging social media and deep learning to detect rare megafauna in video surveys” and published in the international journal Conservation Biology, is partly the result of the Pelagic research project financed by the Foundation for Research on Biodiversity (FRB) within its Centre for Biodiversity Synthesis and Analysis (Cesab), and is based on the collection of aerial videos financed by the Explorations de Monaco.

[Press release] Study in Nature: Protecting the Ocean Delivers a Comprehensive Solution for Climate, Fishing and Biodiversity

A new study published in the prestigious peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature today offers a combined solution to several of humanity’s most pressing challenges. It is the most comprehensive assessment to date of where strict ocean protection can contribute to a more abundant supply of healthy seafood and provide a cheap, natural solution to address climate change—in addition to protecting embattled species and habitats.

 

An international team of 26 authors – including researchers from Ifremer and the University of Montpellier and with the CNRS – identified specific areas that, if protected, would safeguard over 80% of the habitats for endangered marine species, and increase fishing catches by more than eight million metric tons. The study is also the first to quantify the potential release of carbon dioxide into the ocean from trawling, a widespread fishing practice—and finds that trawling is pumping hundreds of millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the ocean every year, a volume of emissions similar to those of aviation. This work was partly funded by the Foundation for Research on Biodiversity (FRB), EDF and the Total Foundation, through the FREE and PELAGIC research projects of the FRB’s Center for Biodiversity Synthesis and Analysis (CESAB).

 

 

Read the full press release

 

[Press release] Study in Nature: Protecting the Ocean Delivers a Comprehensive Solution for Climate, Fishing and Biodiversity

A new study published in the prestigious peer-reviewed scientific journal Nature today offers a combined solution to several of humanity’s most pressing challenges. It is the most comprehensive assessment to date of where strict ocean protection can contribute to a more abundant supply of healthy seafood and provide a cheap, natural solution to address climate change—in addition to protecting embattled species and habitats.

 

An international team of 26 authors – including researchers from Ifremer and the University of Montpellier and with the CNRS – identified specific areas that, if protected, would safeguard over 80% of the habitats for endangered marine species, and increase fishing catches by more than eight million metric tons. The study is also the first to quantify the potential release of carbon dioxide into the ocean from trawling, a widespread fishing practice—and finds that trawling is pumping hundreds of millions of tons of carbon dioxide into the ocean every year, a volume of emissions similar to those of aviation. This work was partly funded by the Foundation for Research on Biodiversity (FRB), EDF and the Total Foundation, through the FREE and PELAGIC research projects of the FRB’s Center for Biodiversity Synthesis and Analysis (CESAB).

 

“Ocean life has been declining worldwide because of overfishing, habitat destruction and climate change. Yet only 7% of the ocean is currently under some kind of protection,” said Dr. Enric Sala, explorer in residence at the National Geographic Society and lead author of the study, Protecting the global ocean for biodiversity, food and climate.

 

“In this study, we’ve pioneered a new way to identify the places that—if strongly protected—will boost food production and safeguard marine life, all while reducing carbon emissions,” Dr. Sala said. “It’s clear that humanity and the economy will benefit from a healthier ocean. And we can realize those benefits quickly if countries work together to protect at least 30% of the ocean by 2030.” 

 

To identify the priority areas, the authors—leading marine biologists, climate experts, and economists—analyzed the world’s unprotected ocean waters based on the degree to which they are threatened by human activities that can be reduced by marine protected areas (for example, overfishing and habitat destruction). They then developed an algorithm to identify those areas where protections would deliver the greatest benefits across the three complementary goals of biodiversity protection, seafood production and climate mitigation. They mapped these locations to create a practical “blueprint” that governments can use as they implement their commitments to protect nature.

 

The study does not provide a single map for ocean conservation, but it offers a first-in-kind framework for countries to decide which areas to protect depending on their national priorities. However, the analysis shows that 30% is the minimum amount of ocean that the world must protect in order to provide multiple benefits to humanity.

 

“There is no single best solution to save marine life and obtain these other benefits. The solution depends on what society—or a given country—cares about, and our study provides a new way to integrate these preferences and find effective conservation strategies,” said Dr. Juan S. Mayorga, a report co-author and a marine data scientist with the Environmental Market Solutions Lab at UC Santa Barbara and Pristine Seas at National Geographic Society.

 

The study comes ahead of the 15th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, which will gather end of 2021 in Kunming, China. The meeting will bring together representatives of 190 countries to finalize an agreement to end the world’s biodiversity crisis. The goal of protecting 30% of the planet’s land and ocean by 2030 (the “30×30” target) is expected to be a pillar of the treaty. The study follows commitments by the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, the European Commission and others to achieve this target on national and global scales.

 

“Solutions with multiple benefits are attractive to people and leaders alike. Our pioneering approach allows them to pinpoint the places that, if protected, will contribute significantly to three big problems at once—food security, climate change, and biodiversity loss.  Our breakthrough in methodology can bring multiple benefits to nature and people,” said Dr. Sala.

 

 

 

 

The project MAESTRO was selected from the FRB-CESAB call for proposals with France Filière Pêche

The project Maestro was selected by the CESAB selection committee from the joint call for proposals between FRB-CESAB and France Filière Pêche

 

MAESTRO will be coordinated by Arnaud AUBER and Camille ALBOUY, both working at IFREMER, and will look into climate change effects on exploited marine communities.

 

The project will be based on the analysis and synthesis of existing data, as well as the modelling of the effects of climate change on the biodiversity of European fish stocks and associated fisheries (North-East Atlantic and Mediterranean). The project will contribute to a better understanding of the effect of climate change on fish resources and fisheries, to help develop adaptive fisheries management measures. 

 

 

More information about Maestro

[Call for proposals] The FRB-CESAB call on systematic reviews has been extended until the 9th of September

The FRB, through its Centre for the Synthesis and Analysis of Biodiversity (CESAB), is funding 2 postdoctoral researchers for up to 18 months, to carry out systematic reviews, using systematic mapping, critical assessment and narrative synthesis of the corpus of selected texts, in order to write a review article for an international scientific journal.

 

 

The project may go as far as either a completed lexicographical analysis or the extraction of statistical data from the corpus and their analysis (meta-analysis).

 

 

  •  Theme 1: State and future of marine biodiversity in a time of global change 
  • Theme 2, in partnership with Agropolis Fondation: Solutions for agro-ecological transition that conserve biodiversity 

 

Pre-proposals deadline : 9th September 2020, 23:59 CEST

More information can be found on the call page

[Call for proposals] Opening of the joint call FRB-CESAB / France Filière Pêche

Climate change will have a lasting impact on the oceans and seas on a global scale. The impacts of these changes on marine fisheries have become a priority.  

 

FRB, with the support of France Filière Pêche, calls on the scientific community to submit projects to the Centre for the Synthesis and Analysis of Biodiversity (CESAB), based on the analysis and synthesis of existing data, as well as the modelling of the effects of climate change on the biodiversity of European fish stocks and associated fisheries (North-East Atlantic and Mediterranean).

 

The project will contribute to a better understanding of the effect of climate change on fish resources and fisheries, to help develop adaptive fisheries management measures. 

 

Pre-proposals deadline : 11 juin 2020, 13:00 (UTC+1)

More information can be found on the call page

Biomimétisme et biodiversité

Le concept de biomimétisme ou bio-inspiration a été théorisé pour la première fois il y a une vingtaine d’année (cf. Janine Benyus : Biomimicry, Innovation Inspired by Nature). L’approche initiale défend une vision qui considère que cette démarche d’innovation « fait appel au transfert et à l’adaptation des principes et stratégies élaborés par les organismes vivants et les écosystèmes, afin de produire des biens et des services de manière durable, et rendre les sociétés humaines compatibles avec la biosphère ».

 

Le Biomimétisme identifie des solutions naturelles apparues au cours de l’évolution, c’est à dire des fonctions ou des rapports entre structures et fonctions chez les organismes vivants qu’il peut être intéressant de transposer à une fonction d’intérêt humain : sa finalité est de chercher, d’identifier et de d’industrialiser une solution à un problème humain.

 

Cette démarche est nécessairement interdisciplinaire, entre sciences fondamentales et sciences de l’ingénieur, et demande de la part des acteurs économiques la mobilisation de ressources significatives en matière de recherche et développement (R&D).

 

 

Le biomimétisme est la rencontre de plusieurs mondes, l’écologie,
les sciences de l’évolution, la biologie et l’ingénierie,
ou encore une interface entre sciences naturelles et industrie.

 

 

L’association Biomimicry Europa, créée en 2006 pour la promotion du biomimétisme, propose de distinguer trois niveaux d’inspiration : les formes biologiques, les matériaux et processus, les interactions.

 

En matière de recherche et développement, l’Allemagne a longtemps été en tête avec plus de 100 structures de recherche publiques impliquées et dix réseaux territoriaux spécialisés. Le Royaume-Uni et la Suisse sont aussi deux pays fortement impliqués en Europe.

 

En France, l’implication est plus récente, mais actuellement, plus de 175 équipes de recherche s’intéressent au sujet et plus de 100 entreprises font appel à cette démarche. Plusieurs Groupements de recherche (GDR) et Réseaux thématiques pluridisciplinaires (RTP) génèrent des initiatives structurantes autour de la chimie bio-inspirée, la mécanique des matériaux biologiques ou les micro-technologies inspirées des insectes. Le centre européen d’excellence en biomimétisme (Ceebios), créé en 2012, fédère un nombre croissant de grandes entreprises comme L’Oréal, LVMH, Engie, Vicat, Saint-Gobain, et bénéficie du soutien du ministère de la transition écologique et solidaire.

 

Les régions les plus impliquées en matière de R&D (compétences académiques) sont l’Ile-de-France, Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes et Nouvelle-Aquitaine, puis, à un niveau sensiblement équivalent, Occitanie, Provence-Alpes-Côte-d’Azur et Grand-Est.