Strengthening Coastal Resource Management

The 10th Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSAScientific Symposium was held in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, where social and natural scientists converged in order to strengthen multi and trans-disciplinary research for sustainable management of the coastal and marine environment.

The University of Zululand was represented by Professor Leon Vivier, Acting Dean in the Faculty of Science.

Themed: Sustainable Utilisation of Marine Resources, the conference addressed the effect of climate change and the human foot print on natural resources.

The conference was held at the Julius Nyerere Conference Centre which is the biggest conference venue in Tanzania. The conference was officially opened by the Tanzanian Minister of Natural Resources.

The conference attracted high level researchers in the fields of sustainable resource management. One of the hot topics at the conference was on oil exploration along the African coastline which is highly topical at the moment. Other hot topics were climate change, rising sea levels as well as sustainable fishing.

“The interesting thing about this conference is that everybody who is involved in coastal research in South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, Somalia etc. were all at this conference. This conference really brings together all scientist who are doing coastal research and working in the marine environment. It also includes Madagascar, Seychelles, Mauritius, Reunion. There is a lot of research that is done on marine resources, particularly on mangroves and see grasses. Currently, we have a number of post grad students that are working in Richards Bay harbour where we look at habitat utilisation. In terms of that, our research is very much alike with what is happening along this coastline. It was good for me to see that because you do research and you think ‘ok, I am putting all these efforts into my research’ but is it really aligned with the current trend in our region? By attending this conference, I saw that it is pretty spot on”, said Prof Vivier.

– Precious Shamase

Pictured: Professor Leon Vivier (second from right), Acting Dean in the Faculty of Science at UNIZULU, with other attendees at the 10th Western Indian Ocean Marine Science Association (WIOMSAScientific Symposium.