The French Tara Oceans, a three year marine and scientific expedition which aims to demonstrate the reality of global warming, will be in Dubrovnik later next week (November 20) as part of a worldwide tour.
The expedition, which launched on 4 September 2009, will last three years and explore the oceans in order to study their plankton and understand the latter’s impact on the climate of the planet. Through this expedition, Tara wishes to inform the public about the vital role of oceans and the impact of climatic warming, and in particular to deepen our knowledge on marine biodiversity.
According to a press release on the expedition, the oceans produce half of the oxygen we breathe. These prairies of plankton and other micro-organisms constitute, via their photosynthetic activity, an enormous oxygen pump. But these marine organisms are also a major carbon dioxide sink. As a result, the future depends on saving the oceans.
However, this complex ecosystem remains one of the least explored fields of oceanography and therefore the least well-known to man, despite its astonishing diversity. Today, this biodiversity is threatened by the major ecological upheavals of climate change and pollution.
The urgency of the situation, as well as the scope and the characteristics of the expedition will make it an extraordinary voyage around the planet, to help understand its origins and its present and to preserve its future.
An international team of oceanographers, ecologists, biologists and physicists from prestigious laboratories has been organised for the Tara Oceans expedition. Artists, journalists, scientific and cultural personalities from the visited countries will be associated with this exceptional adventure.
Photo: La Valette (Malta); © S.Bollet/Fonds Tara