Apr 11, 2024
First Environmental Education Activity on the Posidonia oceanica Reforestation Project in the Marine Protected Area "Isola di Bergeggi"
Youth Generations as Promoters of Marine Conservation

On April 9th, the first environmental education activity on the reforestation of Posidonia oceanica took place at the elementary school of Bergeggi, with the participation of over 40 students. The initiative is part of the international Ocean Foresting campaign by One Ocean Foundation and the Blue Forest project, with a particular focus on restoring Posidonia oceanica in the Mediterranean Sea.

The day started with our marine biologists delivering a brief introductory theoretical lesson, focused on understanding this species and its importance for the ecosystem and learning about the reforestation project initiated in June 2023 in the Marine Protected Area. Following that, a workshop where young students could observe plant cuttings through microscopes, engage in sea protection-themed games, and participate in activities aimed at raising awareness about the importance of this precious species.

The reforestation project referred to was designed to have a positive and concrete environmental impact on the damage caused by the 2018 storm surge in the area, particularly devastating the Sirens' Beach and severely damaging the Posidonia oceanica meadow nearby. Done in collaboration with the ERM Foundation, with the support of the Bergeggi Island Marine Protected Area and the scientific and technical collaboration of the University of Genoa (DiSTAV and Seascape Ecology Lab) and the ISSD (International School for Scientific Diving), the reforestation activity involved transplanting over 2000 Posidonia oceanica cuttings onto 10 coconut fiber mats, covering a total area of approximately 100 square meters, using an innovative and environmentally friendly technique.

The project, an integral part of a broader environmental restoration effort supported by the park authority, not only aims to restore the health of the Posidonia oceanica meadow and the surrounding area but also to raise awareness among the local community and various stakeholders about the importance of this species for the Mediterranean marine ecosystem through citizen science and outreach activities, with particular attention to schools and younger generations.

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