Reporting from the Climate change, deforestation and the future of African rainforests conference

Reporting from the Climate change, deforestation and the future of African rainforests conference, January 4-6, 2012, Oriel College, Oxford University, Oxford, UK

by Trevor Jones, PhD, Remote Sensing Scientist

Greetings from the opening day of the Climate change, deforestation and the future of African rainforests (CCDFAR) conference at Oriel, the fifth oldest college in Oxford, the third oldest University in the world. This timely international gathering brings together the expertise of scientists, practitioners and students representing over 30 institutions, universities, organizations and governmental agencies for an interdisciplinary examination of the challenges facing Africa’s tropical forests. This, the first of three days, has focused on a contextual introduction to the history of the relationships between humans, climate, and forested ecosystems. The next two days will address contemporary change in the forest dynamics, the effects of climate change on forest cover and function, direct human pressures on forested ecosystems (e.g., deforestation, hunting), and the potential challenges of forest conservation in the 21st century.

The format of CCDFAR includes 20 minute presentations followed by 20 minute question periods, poster presentations, and panel discussions. This information exchange will result in the dissemination of a summary document, a synthesis paper, and a special journal issue, all of which will summarize the challenges facing Africa’s tropical forests in the 21st century.

Blue Ventures (BV) has been selected to attend this important conference to present a poster summarizing our Blue Carbon (BC) project. The BC project directly addresses many of the themes of this conference, particularly contemporary change in forest dynamics, anthropogenic pressures on forest ecosystems, and the potential and challenges of conservation in the 21st century. Owing to our reputation, the timeliness and importance of our BC project, and the added bonus that we are the only marine conservation organization in attendance (!), our work has thus far received keen interest. Throughout the coming days, BV is sure to greatly benefit from and contribute to this landmark meeting.

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