On 25th and 26th October the third edition of Climathon Venice took place at the VEGA, Venice Science and Technology Park (Venezia Marghera). Climathon is a global hacakton focused on climate change which has been held simultaneously in over one hundred cities worldwide. This year, the initiative was focused on reducing resource utilization and improving waste management, in order to lower the greenhouse gas emissions. Prof. Stefania Tonin of the IUAV University of Venice was invited to a round table to share the results obtained by GHOST project with researchers, city officials and entrepreneurs in order to identify sustainable management proposals for fishing waste in a circular economy perspective.
On Friday 26th October a round table, intitled "The network of LIFE projects: LIFE KTE EnvHealth Network - Knowledge Transfer and Exchange in Environment and Health Risk Governance" was held in Rome at the Istituto Superiore di Sanità. The event, as part of the final conference of the LIFE Persuaded project (https://lifp.iss.it/), has been an important opportunity to present the LIFE KTE EnvHealth network, which GHOST Project has joined, aimed at promoting the transfer and exchange of knowledge on the environment and health issues. In particular, during the round table the discussion was focused on the communication tools used by the various projects to convey useful information to citizens, stakeholders and policy makers in order to promote policies for the protection of the environment and the human health.
The LIFE GHOST team would like to thank the staff of the LIFE Persuaded project for the organization of the event.
The GHOST team is really excited to announce that recently (June 2018) the Municipality of Venice approved its Council Resolution n.199 proving for the implementation of measures aimed at preventing the abandonment of disused fishing gears in the marine and lagoon areas of its competence. In fact, these measures have been clearly inspired by the Regulation Proposal elaborated by the GHOST Project, which as a whole is still under examination by a regional working group to be eventually adopted by the Veneto region. In particular, Res. N.199 established that disused fishing equipment such as nets, lobster pots and mussel socks should be delivered in specially fitted bins provided with locks.
We think that the Resolution should be regarded as an important first step in the regulatory process for the appropriate management of marine litter in Veneto Region. Therefore, the GHOST team would like to thank the Municipality of Venice, particularly for paying attention to the needs of fishermen who had for a long time asked for eco-compatible solutions to their urgent need of disposing obsolete fishing gears.
From 9th to 12th September, the 31th Congress of the New European Society for Comparative Physiology and Biochemistry (ESCPB) "Shifting Biological Landscapes: from molecules to mechanisms" was held in Porto (Portugal). Within the " From Small Molecules to Big Problems: Nanomaterials, Microplastics and Compounds of Emerging Concern " session, Dr Vanessa Moschino of the Institute of Marine Sciences of Venice presented a poster contribution entitled Assessing the impacts of ghost fishing gear and biodiversity recovery: a case study in the North Adriatic Sea (Italy )", authored by V.Moschino, F. Riccato, R. Fiorin, M. Picone, N. Nesto and L. Da Ros. The poster illustrated the results of LIFE-GHOST project activities aimed at mapping and removing ghost nets impacting the rocky outcrops (Tegnùe) of the Northern Adriatic Sea and monitoring the evolution of biological communities in the areas cleared by this particular category of marine litter.
Weeks full of events for the students! Between March and April, the GHOST team realized dissemination activities specifically tailored to different types of secondary schools: three thematic workshops on marine litter were carried out, structured in such a way as to actively involve over 200 students of different ages and competences. The first seminar took place at the intermediate high school "M. Todesco "in Padua where Dr. Vanessa Moschino illustrated the impacts of marine litter -in particular fishing nets, to five classes of this institute, highlighting in particular possible actions for their reduction and / or mitigation.
The second seminar was addressed to students in Applied Ecology, a degree course in the framework of the Environmental Sciences (Ca 'Foscari University): the students, on the occasion of their visit to the Institute of Marine Sciences in Venice have been able to deepen their knowledge on the research activities carried out at ISMAR, in particular those aimed at evaluating biological resources and the effects of human impacts on marine ecosystems. The students also visited the information point of the GHOST project, set up in one of the institute's premises, where Dr. Nicoletta Nesto illustrated the objectives and the main results obtained within the project. Finally, the third seminar, always organized at the ISMAR headquarters in Venice, was aimed at two classes of students from two different scientific high schools, respectively the Benedetti of Venice and the Majorana Laterza of Putignano. Dr. Vanessa Moschino, in particular, illustrated major problems for the local lagoon and marine environments, mainly the pollution due to microplastics in sea water and sediments; moreover, she made the students participate in the results of the GHOST project, inviting them to learn further by presenting and distributing to them the informative material already realized and made available at the information point of the project.