May 5, 2022
M.A.R.E. - Marine Adventure for Research and Education
One Ocean Foundation, in collaboration with Centro Velico Caprera, has developed a research project that aims to monitor the health of the Mediterranean Sea to promote knowledge and protection of the marine environment.

Among the research initiatives in which One Ocean Foundation is involved, on April 29th the catamaran ONE sailed  from the island of La Maddalena, for the " Marine adventure for research and education " project. This project was developed by the Caprera Sailing Center in collaboration with One Ocean Foundation and with the patronage of the Italian Navy end the Ministry for Ecological Transition.

As a scientific partner, One Ocean Foundation will coordinate the scientific researches that will be conducted during the 12 weeks of navigation in the Tyrrhenian Sea.

The scientists onboard will collect samples of zooplanktonic organisms, natural bioindicators of environmental pollution, to monitor the presence and distribution of various marine contaminants. These samples will be used to trace contaminants such as arsenic, cadmium and mercury that are considered very dangerous environmental pollutants due to their toxicity and accumulation capacity in aquatic organisms. Furthermore, the project will also evaluate the presence of persistent organic contaminants , such as DDT and PCBs, compounds of anthropogenic origin, still present in the environment although most countries have banned their use since the 1970s. Finally, the Foundation will evaluate the presence and distribution of emerging contaminants, such as perfluorinated compounds that have been widely used for their hydrophobic and oil repellent properties in consumer products such as disposable food packaging, outdoor tools, furniture etc.. of which the presence and accumulation of which is still poorly understood.

One Ocean Foundation has developed a research project that aims to monitor the state of health of the Mediterranean Sea to encourage knowledge and protection of the marine environment, one of the main challenges of the contemporary world. The Foundation will coordinate different activities with two main objectives: monitoring the chemical pollution and the marine biodiversity in the Tyrrhenian Sea.

Furthermore, One Ocean Foundation's second goal is to monitor the marine biodiversity, with particular focus species considered cryptic; species that often remain unexplored as they are difficult to identify using traditional methods. For this reason, the Foundation will sample environmental DNA, i.e. traces of DNA left by marine organisms, along the entire sample route to reconstruct the biodiversity of the areas visited.

The scientific activity will be coordinated by Dr. Ginevra Boldrocchi, Scientific Project Coordinator of One Ocean Foundation and researcher at the University of Insubria. The data collected during the research activities will lead to the pubblication of scientific articles on high-level international scientific journals. The initiative promoted by One Ocean Foundation will give students the opportunity to be enrolled in Bachelor's and Master's courses in Environmental Science, and related degrees, to develop scientific theses within the project.

In addition to scientific research, the Foundation aims to spread knowledge and awareness on important environmental issues, promoting correct behavior, essential for pursuing the conservation of the marine environment. Thanks to the patronage and the support of the University of Insubria, students of the PhD course will be hosted on board to carry out interactive lessons in marine ecology and ecotoxicology, as well as activities on the field.

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