Geoscientists face ethical issues in their activities. All branches of geosciences have ethical, social and cultural implications. Geoethics aims to provide a common framework for these concerns, and to nourish a discussion on the basic values which underpin appropriate behaviors and practices, wherever human activities interact with the Earth system.
The spectrum of topics geoethics deals with includes:
• philosophical and historical aspects of geoscience, their relevance to ethical issues and values in contemporary geoscience, and their role in informing methods for effective and ethical decision-making;
• geoscience professionalism and deontology, research integrity and ensuring respectful working spaces, including issues related to harassment and discrimination, gender and disability in geosciences;
• ethical and social problems related to management of land, air and water;
• socio-environmentally sustainable supply of geo-resources (including energy, minerals and water), recognising the importance of effective regulation and policy-making, social acceptance, and understanding and promoting best practice;
• environmental change, pollution and their impacts;
• resilience of society related to natural and anthropogenic hazards, and risk management and mitigation strategies;
• ethical aspects of geoscience education (including issues from theory to educational practice) and communication;
• culture and value of geodiversity, geoconservation, geoheritage and fossils, geoparks and geotourism;
• role of geosciences in achieving socio-economic development that respects cultures, traditions and local development paths, regardless of countries' wealth, and in promoting peace, responsible and sustainable development and intercultural exchange.
Geoscientists’ knowledge and expertise are essential to addressing many of the most urgent global problems, to informed decision-making, and to education at all levels, so that citizens are equipped to discuss, shape and implement solutions to local, regional and global socio-environmental problems. Geoscientists who are more aware of their ethical responsibilities will be better able to put their knowledge at the service of society and to foster public trust in geosciences.
Acknowledging the role of geoscientists at the service of society, this session, co-sponsored by IAPG - International Association for Promoting Geoethics, aims to develop ethical and social perspectives on the above topics, including case studies.
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Chat time: Thursday, 7 May 2020, 08:30–10:15
Societies deploy technologies and infrastructures to interact with natural systems – for which geoscience expertise is key, including understanding changes due to unsustainable human practices. Despite its geoscience basis, however, human interaction with natural systems primarily is an economic, social and cultural endeavour about a desirable human niche. Depending on the ‘political spin’ of given actors – stewardship or engineering, for example – a geo-societal narrative is created when shaping the global human niche. These narratives explain how a given technology or infrastructure shall support production, consumption and societal well-being, as well as societal change and environmental alteration. Relatedly, as highlighted by the geoethics approach [*], geoscience research has ethical, social and cultural implications – for example, in terms of explanatory narratives. Led by climate research, contemporary Earth System Science illustrates that anthropogenic global change is as much a socio-cultural than a science theme 1–3, which cannot be neatly disconnected.
Because the science and the socio-cultural spheres are so inevitably intermingled, a holistic approach to geoscience is required, e.g. when it comes to the future of humankind. Applying the ethical concept of responsibility for future generations (intergenerational justice), the geoscience community should engage with studying pathways to possible futures; that is: to embrace integrated assessments, which are holistic, involving personal and societal concerns, economic and environmental choices as well as philosophical conceptions of the world, human histories and human futures. While some geoscience domains, such as climate sciences, embarked on integrated assessments, others focus on past and present dynamics. In particular, studies of hydrology, nutrient cycles, soils and natural hazards seem prone to engage with holistic, future-oriented integrated assessments.
Swift geo-processes such as the rise of the global sea-level are a ‘geological present’. However, human perception sees them shaping ‘a later future’ only – which sometimes blurs people’s sense-making of the present. Therefore, intergenerational justice calls upon geoscientists to engage with studies of possible future configurations of the Earth System; that is, geoscientist should study the networked geo-, bio-, techno- and societal-cultural systems holistically. It would be negligent grounding political governance on a body of expertise that lacks the integration of future-oriented geoscience knowledge with social science and humanities. More specifically, we argue to envisage a highly integrated exploration of alternative future policy pathways 4. This approach envisages a deliberative learning process about policy alternatives in light of their practical (geoscience and socio-cultural) implications, engaging the potential of geoscience research for humankind.
- Kowarsch, M., Flachsland, C., Garard, J., Jabbour, J. & Riousset, P. The treatment of divergent viewpoints in global environmental assessments. Environ. Sci. Policy 77, 225–234 (2017).
- O’Neill, B. C. et al. The roads ahead: Narratives for shared socioeconomic pathways describing world futures in the 21st century. Glob. Environ. Chang. 42, 169–180 (2017).
- Schill, C. et al. A more dynamic understanding of human behaviour for the Anthropocene. Nat. Sustain. (2019). doi:10.1038/s41893-019-0419-7
- Edenhofer, O. & Kowarsch, M. Cartography of pathways: A new model for environmental policy assessments. Environ. Sci. Policy 51, 56–64 (2015).
How to cite: Bohle, M. and Kowarsch, M.: Taking responsibility: Geo-societal studies of alternative futures, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2759, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2759, 2020.
Many businesses and organizations of all types have adopted ethics codes or codes of conduct. Examples relevant to geoscience include the Cape Town Statement on Geoethics of the International Association for Promoting Geoethics, the Scientific Integrity and Professional Ethics policy of the American Geophysical Union, and the Joint EGU-AGU Statement of principles for a code of ethics for the geosciences. The Government of Canada is implementing a Science Integrity Policy across its science-related Departments. Successful implementation of such policies can be challenging and many breaches have been and continue to be reported. Humans make ethical or unethical decisions and understanding the sociological processes that are involved and applying this knowledge to the implementation of ethics codes may improve their success rates. This paper analyzes these sociological processes through the lens of symbolic interactionism theory. In spite of its somewhat forbidding name, the theory is actually quite simple. It shows how interactions between people lead to the meanings they give to other people, organizations and things. It describes how these meanings lead to the interpretation of situations, and how groups arrive at normative decisions based on this interpretation. These normative decisions involve ethical considerations. The paper describes the approach and seeks audience feedback on a proposed survey of the members of the International Association for Promoting Geoethics to collect empirical evidence on which to base a symbolic interactionist approach to effective implementation of ethics codes in geoscience.
How to cite: Boon, J.: Making ethics codes more effective, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1260, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-1260, 2020.
In our collective endeavour towards global sustainability, there is now a broad appreciation that producing scientifically robust knowledge requires new forms of engagement between scientists, stakeholders and society. But what is the role of Early Career Scientists (ECS) in these processes that are closing the gap between science and policy? Because opportunities to interact with more experienced peers through science refereeing are scarce, the role of ECS in the peer-review process remains minor despite ECS possessing strong academic credentials. Such engagement in the peer-review process represents a valuable opportunity for ECS and the scientific community as a whole. This opportunity provides a robust platform for ECS to understand the overall review process and editorial activities related to high-credibility publications such as those conducted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). During May/November 2018, 174 ECS on behalf of the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists (APECS) reviewed the first and second-order drafts of the IPCC “Special Report on Ocean and Cryosphere and in a Changing Climate (SROCC)”. Here, we present the methodology, results, and lessons learned from these group reviews. Altogether, data from participant surveys on their experience and their comments catalog illustrate ECS as competent reviewers, comparable to more experienced researchers. The diverse disciplines and geographic perspectives, fostered through APECS and its partners, are currently being mobilized in the First Order Draft of the Working Groups I and II of the Assessment Report 6 of the IPCC, and will continue during the second round of reviews of these reports in early 2020. Information gathered during these ongoing reviews will add to the findings obtained during the review of the SROCC.
How to cite: Casado, M., Gremion, G., Aho, K., Caccavo, J., Champollion, N., Choy, E., Dey, R., Fernandez, A., Fugmann, G., Höfer, J., Jawak, S., Mayers, K., Maes, S., Mojica, J. F., Lizotte, M., Pandit, P., Rosenbaum, P., Seyboth, E., Shakil, S., and van Soest, M.: How efficient are Early Career Scientists in peer-review activities? , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-16812, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-16812, 2020.
The Leviathan gas rig, erected 9kms offshore Dor beach, Israel, started in Dec 2019 to treat and refine gas from the largest Israeli gas field, Levaiathan. Initially (2014), gas treatment was planned to occur on an FPSO, which is a deep-sea floating platform. But then in 2015 the gas treatment was moved, following an undocumented decision, to a static platform opposite the coastal settlements of Hof HaCarmel. This sparked the largest environmental struggle that Israel ever knew. I will present the whole story: How and why was the rig moved from sea to shore. Why were regulators sure there will be no environmental problem. Why are citizens concerned. And finally, how are scientists and academics involved, playing a role of scientific experts in the service of society.
How to cite: Aharonov, E.: The Levaiathan gas rig struggle: environmental, political, regulatory, technological and scientific aspects. , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-10747, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-10747, 2020.
The INFACT project aims to reinvigorate mineral exploration in Europe by engaging society and using new technology and research to improve mineral exploration practice. The consortium is formed of geo- and social scientists working together to achieve a new vision of mineral exploration. As a key part of INFACT, expert stakeholders from across Europe and other jurisdictions such as Australia and Canada have been engaged in a series of online and face to face discussions to determine and address identified challenges to exploration and a way to overcome them.
Five key environmental and social challenges and barriers to exploration in Europe have been determined by INFACT through a mix of qualitative and quantitative research. These were (i) existing land use, (ii) the cost of mineral exploration, (iii) public perceptions and negative attitudes toward the exploration and mining industry, (iv) sustainability and the environment, and (v) governance and regulatory structures and processes.
Through a series of workshops and interviews, discussing ways to address these challenges and barriers, a vision for mineral exploration and mining in Europe was created:
- Mining in Europe should contribute to local and regional sustainable development, enabling a low carbon economy through environmentally and socially acceptable extraction of critical raw materials(CRM). This will involve:
- The European Commission developing and enforcing rigorous and binding legislation with respect to all mineral exploration activities;
- Increased investment contribution for exploration of CRM within Europe;
- Exploration companies being required to adopt environmental and socially acceptable good practice;
- Increased awareness of the importance of mining to support a low carbon economy and improved public trust in the process;
- Creation of socio-economic shared value through adoption of multi-stakeholder collaborative planning and visioning; and
- Exploration companies achieving and maintaining a Social Licence to Operate;
The work presented will determine a way to ensure socio-environmentally sustainable supply of raw materials and the key steps required to achieve this vision.
How to cite: MacCallum, C., Russill, J., Kirsch, M., Ajjabou, L., Salam, I., and Bennet, L.: Theory of change for the mineral Exploration - INFACT project, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-18416, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-18416, 2020.
The Spanish group of the IAPG has one of its strategic areas focused on development cooperation, in order to solve environmental, ethical and social problems related to the management of geological resources. One of the branches of this cooperation focuses on natural materials prospection which can be used as cheap additives in the construction process. As a result of this line, a cooperation project was carried out framed in the program of the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (UPM) with Latin America, specifically with the University of Moa, province of Holguín (Cuba). This research aims to characterize the deposits of natural pozzolans in the northeastern region of Cuba, and determine their possible applications in the manufacture of cements and mortars for the construction of social housing in that region. The tasks contemplated in the development of this project are divided into two fundamental parts; the first one, which describes the field campaigns in situ in which geological survey and sampling work was carried out, with the assimilation of natural samples from the selected deposits, as well as samples of slag extracted from a steel plant. The second part refers to the laboratory campaign, in which a great variety of tests have been carried out to determine the suitability of the samples, among which are mentioned: X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, chemical analysis, pozzolanicity, granulometric test, specific surface, real density, freezing, mechanical resistance and determination of the speed of propagation of the ultrasound. After analyzing the results obtained, it is concluded that the samples studied have the properties and characteristics necessary for the manufacture of cements and mortars with pozzolanic characteristics, justifying, in this way, the manufacture of products with a moderate production cost and with the quality for the construction of social housing and infrastructure, so necessary in the study area.
How to cite: Martín Sánchez, D. A., Costafreda Mustelier, J. L., Presa Madrigal, L., García Laso, A., and Rodríguez Rama, J. A.: Prospection of geo-resources for the building of social houses in Cuba, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-7309, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-7309, 2020.
Raising awareness about opportunities for transdisciplinary work and ethical grounding to meet the global challenges to the professions is paramount. Issues of justice and living within the planetary boundaries become also more prominent in the life, social sciences and humanities questioning disciplinary silos. Institutionalising alternatives that create and sustain broader knowledge ecologies for sustainable living is yet to be systematically enabled through new learning and educational pathways. We argue, that there are considerable mutual learning opportunities between artisanal, small-scale mining and small-scale fisheries.
The global employment in the artisanal gold mining sector is estimated at some 10 to 15 million people, of whom 4.5 million are women and 0.6 million children. Some 40 million people are estimated along value chains in the artisanal fishing of whom 50% are estimated to be women. In both sectors informality is high, production very incompletely recorded and relations with governments and local administrations tend to be difficult as perceptions about the negative sides of the artisanal operations are pervasive in a policy context modelled on industrial exploitation and value chains. Where attempts have been made to quantify production and role in employment, food security or even in contribution to GDP and international trade, the numbers almost always justify policy change in favour of the small-scale sectors. In the face of disruptive technologies liable to make many industrial jobs redundant, opportunities for a new brand of artisanal operators in higher value added segments would be possible with suitable investment in people and institutions. This could go well beyond the poverty discourse into which artisanal miners and fishers are often confined, a notion vigorously rejected by many fishers e.g. in West Africa.
The 2018 “Mosi-oa-Tunya Declaration on Artisanal and Small-scale Mining, Quarrying and Development” and the “Voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in the context of food security and poverty eradication” with its grounding in human rights and adopted in 2014 by the FAO Committee of Fisheries are starting points for demarginalising artisanal operators. The small-scale fisheries academy (SSF academy) in Senegal offer an example of how this could be enabled. Some 600,000 people are estimated to work along artisanal value chains in the country.
The SSF academy explores the possibilities to use bottom-up training of trainer approaches to empower individuals (men and women) and communities to improve their livelihoods. Inclusive, participatory methods of active learning based on “Gender Actions Learninig System” (GALS) are being tested to enable experiencing positive local change in relation to global policy goals like the SSF Guidelines in the context of Agenda 2030. The SSF academy offers a safe space where diverse actors can meet, confront their different knowledges and experiences and develop social and technological innovations. Wider sharing builds capabilities and practice of advocacy and collective action thus also paving the way for forms of more participatory governance. Demonstrating feasibility may entice policy reform that would benefit from long-term societal views to counter wide-spread short-termism, for fishers and miners.
How to cite: Nauen, C. E.: Small is beautiful – or is it? The challenges of integrating human rights principles into sector policies favourable to artisanal fisheries and mining, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-3936, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-3936, 2020.
Macroalgae, also called seaweed, play a key ecological role in coastal ecosystems and can be used for a variety of applications, including food, health products, cosmetics, agriculture and environmental management. Well-developed in Asia, the seaweed aquaculture is also a growing economic sector in Europe that can contribute to a sustainable circular bioeconomy. However, this sector lacks specific legislation to regulate its development. To ensure the environmental and economic sustainability of this sector, a group of experts has designed the European guidelines for sustainable development of seaweed aquaculture, PEGASUS, in a participatory and co-designed manner. The scientific, technical, environmental, legal and socio-economic dimensions have been taken into account to anticipate any potential risks associated with aquaculture development. Combining the expertise of SMEs and researchers, these guidelines have been published and presented to the European Parliament to help all stakeholders in the sector to understand the different aspects of seaweed aquaculture. All actors in the sector, such as farmers, suppliers, users, researchers and decision-makers, should establish a collaborative network along the value chain to guide strategic development plans and ensure environmental sustainability.
Ethical recommendations extracted and inspired from this work for better governance and preservation of the marine environment will be presented
How to cite: Barbier, M. and Charrier, B.: Ethical recommendations for Sustainable development of algae aquaculture., EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2460, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2460, 2020.
Geotourism combines abiotic, biotic and cultural aspects. In Tigray in northern Ethiopia, the Orthodox Christian religion is a dominant component of culture, that highlights the importance of geology and the wider natural environment, and creates great visibility for it.
- Hundreds of rock churches have been established in various lithologies, often in very scenic landscapes and are a major tourist attraction in Ethiopia;
- Around every church in Tembien, a sacred forest is present, remnants of the primary forest, 1 ha up to 1 km² in size. In such a way, the believers try to protect God’s creation; it is also a way to protect the church site from erosion and provide a pleasant microclimate;
- Numerous, often strong springs are considered as “holy water”, that has the power to cure various diseases; people travel long distances on foot, either to spend a required period of time near the spring, or to obtain water, often mixed with soil that will be carried home;
- Major churches and “holy waters” are located in remote places; pilgrims follow semi-fixed pilgrim ways, along which basic facilities are established and where riparian people are not surprised by the presence of trekkers;
- As it has been created by God, there is a general sense for environmental protection, which is evidenced by the numerous birds present, the status of forests, construction of nest boxes for doves (representing the Holy Spirit), or the status of wild animals such as leopards;
- Underground tunnels, natural caves (Zeyi cave is 364 m long) or caverns in rocks play a crucial role in ancient traditions of the Tigrayan highlanders; their religious use is considered as a christianisation of an earlier sacred spot;
- There are numerous impressive popular geological myths inspired by religion – for example a fault line that evidences a path of a sacred snake, a petrified marriage party, a 150 Mg rock that was rolled by one Mr. Ilias for sake of church building - the storytelling exemplifies the Tembien Highlands’ geoheritage value;
- The function of these sacred places as a main destination for domestic tourism contributes to popularising geology in the society.
As geosites are so highly valued in local religious beliefs, introducing a secondary function as geosites requires specific challenges to be taken into account, besides the common drawbacks of tourism in developing countries:
- Problems of access to churches, forests, caves;
- Gender neutral geotourism vs patriarchal religious attitudes;
- Conservation vs “modernisation” of rock churches and sacred sites;
- 4.5 billion years History of Earth vs 6000 years since Genesis;
- Information boards at geosites: religious narratives vs scientific understanding;
- Showing appropriate respect to the sacred environment;
- Preparation of appropriate and site-specific souvenirs; and
- Community ownership and benefits of geotourism.
In Tembien, the local society has preserved sacred geosites which are important for their self-definition as societies protected by divine powers. Mutual respect, openness and a participatory approach are key when sharing the preserved sites to geotourists.
How to cite: Nyssen, J., Yonas, M., Ghebreyohannes, T., Smidt, W., Lenaerts, L., Gebreslassie, S., Annys, S., Meaza, H., Williams, F., Dessein, J., Hagos, M., and Haile, M.: Geotourism interactions with Christian Orthodox religion in Tembien (Tigray, Ethiopia), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-5704, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-5704, 2020.
Geotourism is a niche type of sustainable tourism which focuses on geological and geomorphological features of an area, and associated culture and biodiversity. Geosites are important resources for geotourism development. The southeastern Lake Tana region in Ethiopia possesses several geosites that are of interest to both the scientific community and tourists having a broad interest. The area is also part of an important economic corridor and tourist route in the country. Currently, only the Blue Nile Falls, Lake Tana and its island monasteries are being visited. The objective of this study is, therefore, to inventory geosites in the southeastern Lake Tana region and to assess their potential for geotourism development. To this end, a geosite inventory and assessment methodology was developed. The criteria, indicators and sub-indicators used for assessment were prepared based on a review of publications. The indicators used for assessing the potential of geosites are scientific, educational, scenic, recreational, protection, functional and ecological values. A first list of 114 potential geosites have been inventoried based on stakeholder interviews and a review of relevant documents in the study area. Further screening and clustering resulted in a final list of 61 geosites. Among the major newly proposed geosites are viewpoints; waterfalls; hot springs; a large flood plain; caves and cave churches; rock-hewn churches; a shield volcano; lava tubes; and volcanic plugs, cones and columns. Quantitative assessment of the potential of these geosites revealed that clustered geosites received relatively higher scientific, scenic and recreational value scores. For sustainable development of geotourism in the Lake Tana area, it is important to improve access to geosites, and establish visitor centers and accommodation facilities at selected sites.
Keywords Geoheritage . Sustainable development . Volcanic features . Lake . Waterfalls . Flood plain . Geotouristic valorization.
How to cite: Tessema, G. A., van der Borg, J., Sewnet, A., van Rompaey, A., Adgo, E., Nyssen, J., Asrese, K., Van Passel, S., and Poesen, J.: Inventory and Assessment of Geosites for Geotourism Development in the southeastern Lake Tana region, northwest Ethiopia, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-841, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-841, 2020.
Geoethics education: From theory to practice – a case study
Pimnutcha Promduangsri (1, 2) and David Crookall (1)
(1) Université Côte d’Azur, Nice, France; (2) Méditerranée 2000, Cannes, France.
The planet Earth, and thus humanity, currently face such monumental geo-problems that geoethical behaviour by all citizens is a real imperative. The problems are well known: global warming and climate change, pollution, sea-level rise, deforestation, ocean acidification, biodiversity loss and so on. This situation requires that all citizens learn to behave in a geoethical fashion and in harmony with Earth’s nature. This in turn necessitates deployment on a massive scale of geoethical education, or what we call geo-edu-ethics – ‘edu’ is sandwiched between ‘geo’ and ‘ethics’. This is meant to suggest that in order to bring together ‘geo’ and ‘ethics’, we need ‘edu’. On another level, we also argue that it is manifestly and axiomatically unethical not to provide necessary geoethical knowledge in schools, universities and other training, in addition (and related) to the education already being dispensed. Most ministries of education are thus failing their citizens in this regard.
The principle and necessity of geo-edu-ethics have been successfully translated into hands-on practice by Méditerranée 2000 (M2k), which celebrated its 30th anniversary last year. This is a French association based in Cannes that accomplishes on-going, geo-edu-ethical, or geoethical educational, projects for a wide range of audiences.
Projects range from elementary school up to adult education, and include public awareness campaigns, school visits and trips, ethical tourism, local authority advice and industrial guidance on geoethical matters. Such projects focus on the promotion of geoethical behaviour and decisions that influence the way humans interact with the Earth systems, especially in regard to waste, coastal areas, water, policy making, pollution, and so on. The association has been successful in changing geoethical behaviours and attitudes among local people, for example, in regard to recycling, raw materials, flooding, pollution, reducing one’s carbon footprint and energy use.
The presentation will (a) highlight the absolute necessity of providing geoethical education at all levels of society and in all subject areas of education, (b) outline the geoethical imperative for ordinary citizens (youth, parents, industry, etc.), (c) show how a dedicated and enthusiastic group of people can help citizens to move towards more ethical behavior as they interact with a range of Earth systems, and thus to participate in that geoethical imperative in everyday life.
How to cite: Promduangsri, P. and Crookall, D.: Geoethics education: From theory to practice – a case study, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-4075, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-4075, 2020.
Eighty-four percent of the world’s population self-identifies as religious, and many of these people live in low-income contexts exposed to seismic hazard risk and to potentially disastrous outcomes. Using a case-study from Haiti, this presentation explores the theoretical benefits of a geoscientific – religion collaboration contribution to education modules for saving lives and livelihoods in seismic risk zones. Our previous research, carried out in areas most affected by the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, which caused catastrophic fatality and life-changing injury rates across the demographic spectrum, revealed that many people had little inkling of what an earthquake was or of how they should respond to one. However, this ignorance was not due to lack of desire for, or lack of interest in the significance of seismic hazard risk awareness or of disaster mitigation. On the contrary, we found a very serious desire for education that would lead to greater awareness and disaster mitigation. The real problem was based in a lack of access to educational systems and in the lack of serious geoscience within the educational curriculum. Drawing on my research carried out after the 2010 Haiti earthquake, and our recent publication, Abbott, Roger P and Robert S. White, Narratives of Faith from the Haiti Earthquake: Religion, Natural Hazards and Disaster Response. (New York: Routledge, 2019),this presentation, advocates for an experimental project methodology that would combine both geoscience and religious education working in collaboration to demonstrate the potential benefits for saving lives and livelihoods for vulnerable communities exposed to seismic risk. In Haiti, the majority of educational establishments are faith-based. Therefore, these establishments are significant stakeholders for geoscientists to be in collaboration with. The geo-scientifically educated students can then input their education into parental/familial life, thereby extending the seismic hazard awareness and disaster mitigation procedures even more widely in society. In geographical contexts, where religious beliefs are endemic to daily life, a religious collaboration with geoscience could help establish a religious as well as confident scientific logic and resilience from embracing the geoscience relevant to students’ locales, as being both scientifically and theologically justified. The five-year longitudinal project we advocate would involve constructing a contextualised science-faith teacher-training module, its implementation in selected schools in Haiti, and the utilisation of Raspberry Shake seismometers in those schools for monitoring and collection of seismic activity data. A control group would also be selected, which would neither be subjected to the educational material, nor would they have the Raspberry Shakes. Analysis of the data from both groups and of any changes in disaster awareness and mitigation in one group in comparison with the other would reveal the feasibility and beneficial nature of such an indigenised educational programme for a national curriculum in Low Income Countries.
How to cite: Abbott, R.: Geoscience in collaboration with religion to save lives and livelihoods in seismic risk regions: a case study from Haiti, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2723, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2723, 2020.
How much care should one have for planet Earth? Most religious groups see the Earth as a place or object that should be taken care of even though some have deified the Earth. Although some religious people think that caring for the Earth amounts to worship, we can show those of that mindset the common good that could accrue from working together. We look at a private Christian University in Ogun State, Nigeria and how it’s activities are working for the common good of the society.
Increase in population leading to greater demand for resources, an increase in industrial waste generation and economic poverty levels, are challenges that geoscientists, engineers and stakeholders could collaborate on to find solutions for the common good of the society. Several faculty members at this religious institution, Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria, are actively involved in environmental and sustainable research projects that would be important to the good of the general public, especially in the local and rural areas near the location of the University. Particularly, water availability and quality along with generation of waste and waste disposal being the top areas where Earth religious scientists/engineers working with the community could achieve a common good for the society.
Several research works examine procurement of potable water, generation of waste, and how our actions, activities or inactivity could lead to environmental degradation, and adversely affect us now or in the near future. We discuss some of the ongoing research works and align them with religious text as a way of getting the skeptics to work together for the common good. “Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden to Eden to tend and keep it” (Genesis 2:15) and Jesus told his disciples to “Gather all the fragments that remain, so that nothing is lost” (John 6:12). The presence or lack of resources and human activities have significant health effect on the community. As part of an ongoing study, we are collaborating with the locals, tapping on their religious belief systems, using science and engineering to benefit the good of the society. The outcomes will be presented during the meetings.
How to cite: Isiorho, S., Omole, D., Akinwumi, I., Emenike, P., Ede, A., and Aizebeokhai, P.: The Nexus Between Religion, Environment and Community: The Case of a Nigerian Community, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20656, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20656, 2020.
IPCC targets 1.5C or 2C global temperature rises relative to pre-industrial as the rises required to prevent significant damage. Politicians have paid lip-service to these with international commitments such as the Paris Accord, but the fact remains that these commitments are not sufficient to meet these targets. Indeed, it is almost impossible to do so. Cooling the earth by stratospheric aerosol injection geoengineering has been proposed as a possible way of avoiding crossing the IPCC 2C threshold. But there are numerous issues related to ethics, equity, and economics when dealing with global control of climate that make such deployment extremely difficult. An alternative would be to tackle the impacts of climate change piecemeal. To that end solutions to cryosphere risks have been proposed (to preserve sea ice, permafrost and ice sheets), and these are very much easier to deal with ethically and from governance perspectives. Furthermore, they are providing much needed hope and opportunities to buy-in to the issue for young people. The opportunities to move the discussion forward by emphasizing the moral opportunities to help the South, unborn generations and other species can be readily grasped by these kinds of interventions.
How to cite: Moore, J.: Targeted geoengineering as an ethical response to climate risk, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-3257, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-3257, 2020.
Founded on July 2019, the “School on Geoethics and Natural Issue” (http://www.geoethics.org/geoethics-school) is a scientific, international, multicultural and multidisciplinary meeting place for teaching and learning of the principles and values of geoethics in the light of the philosophy and history of Earth sciences. Its intent is to provide background knowledge and the evaluation skills necessary to understand the complex relationship between human action on ecosystems and the decisions geoscientists make in the discipline that impact society, including improving the awareness of professionals, students, decision-makers, media operators, and the public on an accountable and ecologically sustainable development.
The School on geoethics, conformed to the Geoethical Promise (http://www.geoethics.org/geopromise) and the Cape Town Statement on Geoethics (http://www.geoethics.org/ctsg), aims to provide excellent education in geoethics (http://www.geoethics.org/definition), thus promoting the development of a scientific and critical attitude to the knowledge of the Earth and its constituent systems, by fostering a growth of awareness and responsibility towards the planet, education in the values and actions underlying a respect for ecosystems, including responsible use of resources, management of natural risks, reduction of pollution and its repercussions on human health and climate, adaptation to environmental changes, in view of an accountable and ecologically sustainable development.
Moreover, it provides the opportunity to deepen reflection on the sense and social utility of geosciences, analyzing their rational categories, values, possible perspectives, uncertainties and cognitive limits, and to learn and develop more responsible strategies, operating procedures and practical actions, that are compatible with respect for socio-ecological systems, the vocation of the territories, including the health and safety of human communities.
The courses are addressed to different categories of users: they can be useful to both secondary school students and university undergraduate/graduate students in disciplines that deal with the environment from different perspectives (planning, naturalist, geo-biological, landscape, architectural, legislative, educational, cultural and relative to communication). Scholars of the phenomena and processes of the planet (researchers, academics, scientists), as well as those who physically operate in the territories (various types of professionals, geologists, engineers, landscape architects, risk experts, media operators, decision-makers) can find valid support to their scientific and professional preparation in the courses. Finally, the School on geoethics is also aimed at the general public and others, including non-experts, who are interested in better understanding the bond that links human communities to ecosystems, within the perspective of responsible development.
How to cite: Peppoloni, S., Di Capua, G., and Bobrowsky, P. T.: School on Geoethics and Natural Issues, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2351, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2351, 2020.
“GOAL - Geoethics Outcomes and Awareness Learning” (https://goal-erasmus.eu/) is an international partnership project aimed to develop the potential of geoethics with the aim of improving its concepts and practices through an innovative and creative approach. The members of the different partner countries (Portugal, Austria, Italy, Israel, Spain, Lithuania) are working bringing together their expertise in overlapping disciplinary areas and intellectual synergies to develop an articulated approach and contribute to an advancement of the geoethical thinking. In particular the project integrates researchers and practitioners with skills in geoscience education, geological heritage, georisks, environmental sciences, theoretical aspects of geoethics and information and communication technologies in education.
The project "GOAL" aims to develop a geoethics syllabus and to offer suggestions on educational resources to be used in Higher Education, in order to promote awareness-raising on ethical and social implications of geoscience knowledge, education, research, practice and communication, thus enhancing the quality and relevance of students’ knowledge, skills and competencies. The creation of this international network and subsequently the syllabus and other educational resources will develop operational capacities for strengthening the conceptual substratum of geoethics.
The Italian team has contributed to frame geoethics from a theoretical point of view, by introducing definitions, values and contents. It has also clarified some concepts of utmost importance in geoethics, like that of responsibility, intellectual freedom, research integrity, , prevention, sustainability, resilience, etc. Moreover, some specific issues have been addressed, such as the difference between ethical issues and ethical dilemmas, as well as the necessity to reach a reasonable alignment of values when dealing with geological activities that may have an impact on environment and population. Finally, through the use of videos, some important connections that link geoethics to several geosciences issues have been explained, such as georisks and georesources management.
The target group of GOAL project is formed mainly by Higher Education students, professors and researchers. Practitioners in the field like, for example, “geoheritage site” guides and secondary teachers, are also groups of interest for the project activities.
How to cite: Di Capua, G. and Peppoloni, S.: GOAL: an international project to develop geoethics and its educational potential, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2353, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2353, 2020.
The geosciences have experimented recently the urgent necessity to count on practitioners who possess an ethical conscience and the desire to act responsibly and serve the society. This is especially necessary in the case of our paleontological heritage. Fossils are natural objects resulting from natural processes that connect us with our natural environments and, also importantly, with our origins and past. The paleontological heritage is therefore strongly linked with our natural, social and cultural heritage, and cannot be interpreted or studied without this synergetic perspective. Transmitting paleontological knowledge to geoscientists (including educators) and authorities, especially based on the findings from the fossil record, must be pivotal in order to ensure adequate protection and conservation of the paleontological heritage, promote responsible research practices and attract attention by society.
An ethical and correct management of the paleontological heritage often raise key ethical concerns. There are a range of useful examples concerning i) the increasing use of technological advances and an ambitious development of infrastructures (e.g., mining activities and exploitation of georesources, railroad, highway and residential projects, etc.) often initiated, funded, and influenced by government agencies or public and/or private organizations; ii) individual actions to collect the most spectacular, relevant fossils related to both commercial or collecting, or simple vandalism; and iii) the increasing use of fossils in paleontological research, didactic and touristic activities and exhibitions—and its profound impact on sites and fossils, that relate to our paleontological heritage and can thus foster personal growth, enrich citizens´ knowledge and promote (and improve) interaction between society and this field of geosciences.
More specifically, in Spain there are examples and case studies in the field of geoscience that illustrate how to gain awareness and knowledge about geoethical conflicts between works of infrastructures, and the geoconservation of paleontological sites and the discovery of new fossils, with benefits for society, the administration, and the scientific community.
Identifying and considering ethical issues and dilemmas associated to these topics in paleontology are important for both ethical (adhering to general principles or conceptions of what is right and wrong) and practical reasons. As such, geoscientists who are more aware of their ethical and social responsibilities concerning our paleontological heritage will be better able to put their knowledge at the service of society and to help increase public trust in geosciences.
How to cite: DeMiguel, D., Strani, F., Azanza, B., and Meléndez, G.: Best practices in cooperation between authorities and geoscientists to serve society and ensure adequate protection of our palaeontological heritage, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-3325, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-3325, 2020.
The recognition of the Human Right to Water and Sanitation by the United Nations General Assembly in 2010 marks a major symbolic and legal milestone. The United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) incorporate the different interests of society. In combination with limited resources conflicts of interests are inevitable. Competing interests of different stakeholders concerning water and land-use management are particularly big drivers of conflicts in this field. Also the personal daily behaviours of its individuals influences the water and energy consumption of whole society.
An essential baseline to achieve societal goals related with water might be the implementation of coherent environmental policies. Transnational implications of e.g. large water-infrastructure projects bring additional complexity to decision making processes. The Implications of climate change on water management add another layer of uncertainty.
Professionals with a higher education in geosciences are at the heart of humankind’s attempts to deal with all of this issues. They are not only supposed to hold technical expertise, but also understand their responsibilities. A modern education of the students in geosciences therefor has to account for this challenges. Geoethics is capable of providing the theoretical background on this challenges.
The GOAL project (Geoethics Outcomes and Awareness Learning) aims in general at improving the concepts and practices of Geoethics and specifically to provide educational material (a syllabus and complementary educational resources) to be used in higher education. From the wide range of geoethical issues related to water management, two cases were chosen to introduce students to the concepts of Geoethics. The water supply system of Austria´s capital Vienna serves as a starting point to deal with questions like utilization pressure on water and land. An historic dam that is now used for production of "green" electric energy via hydropower, sets the frame for the discussion about the impacts of hydropower on the riverine ecosystem.
This study has been elaborated in the scope of Erasmus Plus GOAL Project with the reference: 2017-1-PTO1-KA203-035790.
How to cite: Handl, S., Schneider-Voß, S., Fiebig, M., and Langergraber, G.: Geoethics in water management – Resources for higher education (GOAL Project framework), EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-6030, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-6030, 2020.
We rely on minerals for almost everything we do in our lives – from metals of all kinds, used in bulk or in tiny quantities in a huge range of technologies, to construction materials and fertilisers. Sourcing this ever-growing range of raw minerals depends on a global mining industry, which has historically caused great social and environmental harm, and all too often continues to do so (not least because it is so energy- and water-intensive), despite progress towards addressing these impacts.
The circular economy (CE) promises more sustainable alternatives to conventional linear production and consumption models in which raw materials are extracted, used and ultimately discarded as waste. It seeks to minimise waste and environmental harm throughout the supply chain while optimising resource efficiency, and recognises the need to transform the design of products, services and technologies in order to reduce resource use and maximise recoverability for recycling, remanufacture and reuse. Nonetheless, however rapidly a CE transition is implemented, society will still require significant quantities of primary mined resources. For instance, many of the elements required for low-carbon energy technologies have not previously been mined and used in significant quantities, so they are simply not (yet) available to recycle. A transition to a more sustainable and socially just ‘new minerals economy’ must therefore encompass both the emergent circular economy and the mining sector.
Although there is an urgent need for the mineral resource consumption and production system to undergo a sustainability transition, and despite its deep entanglement with other such socio-technical systems (energy, but also water, food and transport, for instance), it has yet to be addressed in the transitions literature. Indeed, there has been very little research from any perspective that has considered CE and mining together, or taken a system-level view including both responsible sourcing (by manufacturers) and responsible supply (by mining companies or through CE routes).
This presentation outlines my ongoing PhD project to develop a preliminary conceptual framework for a socio-technical transition to a ‘new minerals economy’, and to undertake three case studies of actors across the mineral resources system seeking to take a more responsible and sustainable approach encompassing both mined and CE resources – a manufacturer, a mining company and a material stewardship scheme operator. The research will take an iterative, abductive approach, to develop the preliminary framework while drawing on relevant concepts from the transitions literature to maximise learning opportunities from the case studies.
How to cite: Bilham, N.: Meeting our future mineral resource needs sustainably – a socio-technical transitions perspective, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-9358, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-9358, 2020.
Social networks based popular movements are a new phenomenon promoting societal changes, usually with legitimate claims, although moved more by beliefs and emotions than reason. Geoscientists, as citizens, will have to know how to explain what makes justified beliefs justified when the decisions will affect the environment or the social system (1), including the understanding of the mechanisms that move societies.
Mendoza, Argentina, at the piedmont of the Andes, is a semi-arid region (less than 250 mm of rain per year). Agriculture represents one important activity (consuming around 80% of the water). A little more than 10% is for human consumption, around 4% for recreational/environmental use, 1% for Industry and 1% in the oil and mining industry (2). All this water came from the melting of the Andes ice and snow, resources depleted due to climate changes.
Mendoza has a very advanced and environmentally friendly Mining Code but seen as too restrictive from others. It limits projects in glacier areas and the use of chemicals to extract minerals like gold and others. At the end of 2019, the new Government decided to modify the Mining Code keeping near glacier limitations but allowing the controlled use of chemicals for the mining.
The perfect social wave appeared when the new law was being approved by the local Congress. Protestors closed roads, claiming the water would be contaminated, that agriculture would suffer from pollution, and other panicking scenarios, all supported by the extended feeling that the corruption is a central problem that will not help in establishing the proper controls, and fed by the lobby of the agricultural industry.
As the scarcity of water is an endemic problem in the region, the fear, as a psychological virus, did spread through the social networks, moving concerned citizens to win the battle and forcing the Governor to cancel the new law.
Scientists, data, the offer of external audits, tried to convince, by the reason, that responsible mining is possible and, if the water is a problem, the initial point to improve is its use in agriculture (were a loss of almost 50% occur by inefficient irrigation practices), but emotion and fear won the battle.
These dilemmas are not easy to deal with and, giving the complexity of the world around us, a systemic Geoethical approach should be the right one to confront the ethical dilemmas in the Geoscientists’ spheres of action. The IAPG White Paper on Responsible Mining is a fundamental tool to be used by geoscientists/citizens to cope with the dilemmas that appears when the emotions overshadow the reason and, probably, we have to follow the suggestions made by Begon (4).
- (1) Marone E. and Marone L. 2019. Ethical dilemmas of the citizen Geoscientist doing science, technology, and profession. EGU2019
- (2) Departamento General de Irrigación. Mendoza. 2019.
- (3) Arvanitidis N., Boon J., Nurmi P. and Di Capua G. 2017. White Paper on Responsible Mining. IAPG - http://www.geoethics.org/wp-responsible-mining.
- (4) Begon, M. 2017. Winning Public Arguments As Ecologists: Time for a New Doctrine? Trends in Ecology & Evolution 32 (6): 394–96. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tree.2017.03.009.
How to cite: Marone, E.: The reason versus the emotion and the perfect Wave. Report of a witness., EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-13200, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-13200, 2020.
This study investigated the physicochemical and microbial contamination in the drinking water of fifteen villages in the Nowshera District. For this purpose, water samples (n=165) were collected and analyzed for pH, alkalinity, total dissolved solids, anions: carbonate (CO3), bicarbonate (HCO3), chloride (Cl), fluoride (F), nitrate (NO3) and sulphate (SO4), cations: sodium (Na), potassium (K), calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg) and arsenic (As) and microbial parameters (total coliform, fecal coliform and E coliform). Results revealed higher F, NO3 and Fecal coliform contaminations in drinking water of the study area that have surpassed 28%, 5% and 30% of sampling respectively. Higher level of these contaminants in drinking water could cause health hazards such as dental and skeletal fluorosis, joint pain, dysentery, diarrhea and various other water borne diseases among the inhabitants of the study area. Fluoride contamination in water could be attributed to the F containing carbonates rocks of Peshawar Basin. Higher NO3 and Fecal coliform contaminations in water could be attributed to surface ongoing agriculture activities and animals wastes that have affected dominantly the shallow aquifers in the study area. The study, therefore, strongly recommends deep well boring and defluoridation of the drinking water in the study area.
How to cite: Naveed, M., Yaseen, M., Shaheen, S., and Muhammad, S.: Drinking water quality assessment for geochemical and microbial parameters in Nowshera District, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan; In an aspect of Geo-ethical Consideration, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-5890, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-5890, 2020.
Research Infrastructures play a key role in the innovation process, producing knowledge and expertise, interacting with governmental bodies, private sector, Universities, and other relevant stakeholders, helping to respond to challenges in science, industry and society. Not to be neglected, the great potential of the Research Infrastructures in the transition from research networks to international organisation frameworks requires a long-term commitment of human resources across the Countries.
EMSO ERIC is aimed at coordinating the use of pan-European facilities and sea operation resources in order to ensure maximum benefit to the ocean observation community, optimising access to ocean observatory infrastructure data and services.
A specific management approach is needed in order to properly ensure the specific and valuable skills and competencies, appropriated for the implementation and upgrading of the EMSO Research Infrastructure. Here we present the principles adopted by INGV, Representing Entity and Host Country of EMSO ERIC in the provision of the in kind Contribution of human resources.
The aim is to set a good working and professional environment for properly managing the Research Infrastructure, conducting research and ensure responsibility in the professional activities.
A synergic strategy has been set up among scientific, technological, legal and managerial activities aimed at supporting and facilitating the scientific advancement and human and environmental well-being in the context of the Italian participation in Research Infrastructures.
The in-kind Contribution of INGV is not limited to the fulfilment of the obligations in charge of Italy as Representing Entity and Host Country, but is primarily aimed to put knowledge at the service of the society in broad sense and to foster public trust in geosciences. In addition,the knowledge acquired by INGV personell in kind involved in EMSO ERIC international consortium increases the skills of INGV itself, as Italian public Research Body.
Furthermore, the in kind Contribution has the ethical duty to enable researchers to address societal challenges with a global dimension, beyond the national borders.
Relationship management is of great importance for such completely innovative and dynamic activities as those carried out in kind in favour of EMSO ERIC as their quality is a key factor in achieving efficiency and productivity.
We will present how sharing good practices and experimental interchange trough Research Infrastructure and Research Institutions can provide an effective and science-based support to the society interface and to enhance responsible practice of science.
How to cite: Beranzoli, L., Sangianantoni, A., Di Laura, F., Tegas, V., Materia, P., and Chiappini, S.: The role of the geoscientists at service of the society: The management approach of the In kind Contribution of the Human Resources to the EMSO Research Infrastructure , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-19387, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-19387, 2020.
Lago Exsnia-Viscosa is located in the eastern part of Rome, on the left bank of Tiber river, close to the historical centre of the city and in a highly urbanized area. The lake takes its name from the factory of artificial silk, the SNIA Viscosa, active there from 1923 to 1954. The industrial plant, located close to the Marranella ditch, used its water for the production processes, also after its channelled and covered. The Marranella ditch was named also Acqua Bullicante (in English “Bubbling water”). It is supposed that the ditch was hosted along a fault where bubbling waters and diffuse degassing from soil were recognized. These manifestations were dominated in CO2 but due to the intensive post-war (Second World War) building expansion, no trace remain. These phenomena are typically recognizable in volcanic areas characterized by active hydrothermalis, such as the neighbour volcanic district of Alban Hills. The proximity of this volcanic district to Rome and the fact that it cannot be considered extinct have moved our motivation to study the Lake Exsnia-Viscosa to investigate on possible degassing phenomena in the city centre. The lake appeared in the ‘90s, after illegal excavations (deep up to 10-13 meters) to build unlawfully a shopping center. This caused a leakage of groundwater and the emergence of a small lake (about 7,000 m2 large, around 7 meters deep). Due to the citizen protests, the works were immediately blocked and the whole area was expropriated and closed. The site, has remained closed, from ‘90s to today, favouring re-naturalization processes, new ecological systems and forbidding anthropogenic transformations. Currently, it represents a precious green area for the city, but is still in danger of being threatened by speculation. For this reason, the citizen is fighting for its recognition as natural heritage supported by cultural and professional associations. In this framework, our study, moved at the beginning to investigate on degassing phenomena, proved to be an important step in the process of recognition of the site as natural heritage. The lake has been used by us as an open-air laboratory collecting water along a vertical profile from the lake surface to the maximum depth, for a geochemical and microbial characterization of the groundwaters. Currently, the results are supporting the community and the local administration in order to make this green site a protected area to donate to their citizens.
How to cite: Procesi, M., Cinti, D., Cabassi, J., Capecchiacci, F., Pizzino, L., Caracausi, A., Fazi, S., and Casentini, B.: Fluid geochemistry as useful tool for the recognition of the Lago Exsnia-Viscosa (Rome-Italy) as natural heritage, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-3647, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-3647, 2020.
The Aspromonte Geopark project rises from the peculiar geological history of this sector of the southern Italian peninsula, apparently in continuity with the rest of the thin-skinned thrust-sheet system of the Apennine-Magrebian orogenic system, although characterized by deep-seated crystalline basement rocks, interpreted as fragmented relics of a sector of the original southern European Variscan chain (Cirrincione et al., 2015). These rocks are the result of an ancient geological history rooted since the Paleozoic to arrive up to the already active seismogenic tectonic activity, passing through the Oligocene-Miocene syn-orogenic clastic deposition of the Stilo Capo d’Orlando Formation and the evaporitic deposits, which testifies the Messinian salinity crisis. This peculiar geological heritage allows the preservation of an articulated geodiversity that contribute to the unraveling of two orogenesis (i.e. Variscan and Alpine), testified by the presence of intensively deformed metamorphic rocks, involved in two orogenic cycles (Ortolano et al., 2005; 2014; 2020), as well as in the occurrence of syn-orogenic sedimentary deposits covered in turn by the back thrusting of the Varicolori Clays and the final deposition of the Gessoso-solfifera succession. At the moment, the growing Aspromonte Geopark counts 89 geosites, eight of which are of international importance and five inserted within territorial and cultural landscape units. Many of these geosites are able to experiment new ways to communicate, with the aid of new technologies (i.e. GIS, 3D Virtual outcrop reconstruction and VR), the slow movement of the Earth crust, testified and preserved in different geosites, where is possible to observe clearly the presence of mylonitic rocks (i.e. rocks involved in high strain-rate regime undergoing plastic deformation) as well as the occurrence of several types of folding system activation, such as flow perturbation fold system evolving to sheath folds (Fazio et al., 2017; 2018; Ortolano et al., 2020). This geological peculiarity can communicate as a metamorphic outcrop can be read as an Earth-moving view where are enclosed pieces of the memory of the rock incessant slow movement of Earth interior.
Cirrincione, R., Fazio, E., Fiannacca, P., Ortolano, G., Pezzino, A., Punturo, R. (2015) - Periodico di Mineralogia, 84 (3B)
Fazio, E., Ortolano, G., Visalli, R., Alsop, I., Cirrincione, R., Pezzino, A. (2018) Italian Journal of Geosciences, 137 (2), pp. 208-218.
Fazio, E., Ortolano, G., Cirrincione, R. (2017) International Journal of Earth Sciences, 106 (6), pp. 2039-2040.
Ortolano, G., Cirrincione, R., Pezzino, A. 2005 Schweizerische Mineralogische und Petrographische Mitteilungen, 85 (1), pp. 31-56.
How to cite: Ortolano, G., Santagati, S., Gravina, D., Tralongo, S., Parisi, C., and CIrrincione, R.: Aspromonte Geopark Project: a natural laboratory to show the slow movement of the Earth system , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20769, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20769, 2020.
It is common for more modern, educated people to lack appreciation that religious cultures play essential roles in preserving natural features. Examples of faith-based stewardship of lands and waters reveal moral commitments going beyond selfish and material interests. Rural peoples who have long-time connection to nature possess valuable indigenous understanding. In many cases, the local communities have potential for major contributions in sustaining earth’s life-support systems. Also, because so many traditional communities lack political and economic power, in order to serve the needs of their environment, they require partnerships with entities trained in the expertise of (geo)sciences, wisely employed.
Partnerships of grassroots religious people and faith-inspired science practitioners have accomplished significant benefits for humanity and the greater natural systems. This has been and can be accomplished at low financial cost and with low-tech methods. The “supernaturally” motivated will reach out where larger governmental, commercial, and academic-technical forces have little interest. An adage that applies to this type of service is, we labor not with guaranteed success but in being faithful to our deepest calling.
A prime example of Faith-Geoscience partnership multiplied at small-scale, is the continuing effort of Youth With A Mission (YWAM), using volunteer water, sanitation, soils, land-use, and mineral-resource experts. A key factor in conducting successful rural projects, is YWAM’s many established international ministry bases. These serve as hubs for outreach to local communities. Each base is maintained by local, indigenous faith leaders working with and for their communities. Many bases are rural but some are also in the midst of densely-populated cities. The communities with base leadership identify critical environmental issues and then seek the help of identified geoscientists to come, survey each issue, help training to gain local expertise, plan-design in full cooperation with vested parties, and then help, but not perform all the effort for solutions. YWAM and its professional volunteers are predominantly Christian, but they operate with a healthy cooperation among those of many other faiths.
Examples of YWAM-based projects, mostly involving their affiliate Water for Life and Wheaton College (IL) Geology Department, include 1) solid and septic sanitation for the Pellrus Township, RSA; 2) land-use GIS analysis for water resource distribution and earth-materials assessment for the YWAM Kilimanjaro Base, Tanzania; and 3) long-term household water-sanitation and soils improvements for villages in Kosovo. These are only a few of the grassroots collaborations that continue to utilize professional earth-science expertise in service of the global poor, motivated by the spirit of religious commitment.
How to cite: Greenberg, J. and Abbot, R.: Cooperation for Healing the Planet, from Professionals and Communities of Religious Faith, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-11088, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-11088, 2020.
There is a large body of research linking nature with student health and academic performance. University students are exposed to stresses due to personal and academic life challenges such that mental health services on campuses around the world are overwhelmed by the number of students that seek their services. Excessive stress prevents students from spending time outside and in nature, potentially creating a harmful feedback loop. A survey will be drafted to assess the links between time in nature, academic performance, and student health at BYU. The survey will collect information about academic performance, health, and involvement in nature from a representative random sample of BYU students. The data will be analyzed to quantify the relationships among credit-hour load, academic performance, health patterns, and time spent in nature. This work will shed light on how universities can manage student course load and create an environment that protects student health, performance, and well-being while achieving the goals of higher education.
How to cite: Greenhalgh, M.: Effectiveness of nature at improving undergraduate performance and health, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-12427, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-12427, 2020.
Geoscience and religion – potential partners for societal change
European Geosciences Union General Assembly 2020
Austria Center Vienna, Vienna
3-8 May 2020
In virtually all the communities where World Vision works, faith is an important part of people’s lives. Faith can impact on people’s world view, attitudes and outlook in positive and negative ways. It can create a negative culture of fatalism or blaming bad events on the perceived sins of others, or it can create a positive culture of compassion and service to others, especially the more vulnerable.
To encourage this more positive impact of faith, World Vision uses an approach called ‘Empowered World View’ in our livelihoods and resilience work. This is an approach based on the use of Scripture and involving faith leaders, so that it uses language and stories that are familiar in the local contexts and works with faith leaders as people of influence and respect. This paper outlines the unique, potential contributions of faith to global issues including climate change and environmental sustainability.
Empowered World View is a faith-based enabling development approach for mobilizing and empowering individual and communities’ potentials to transform their mindset, beliefs, and behaviour which affirm their identity, dignity, and agency to participate effectively in sustainable transformative change. The approach looks at what the Bible, and other religious scriptures, says about the natural environment and the necessity to use natural resources wisely and with care. This then links to the promotion of climate smart agricultural techniques and conservation agriculture, natural resource management, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation.
Because the approach starts from the common ground of faith and uses the language and expression of faith to build community cohesion and provide a solid basis for understanding the importance of addressing issues of natural resource management, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction, it creates the necessary support and collective capacity to enable communities to tackle them.
To further improve the ability of the poorest and most vulnerable communities to adapt to the challenges of climate change and environmental degradation, collaboration with geo-scientists can increase understanding of risks and hazards and the potential solutions to build community resilience. If this can be done by bringing together geo-scientists and faith leaders, to develop a common understanding of faith and culture as well as science, this can bring about sustainable change in the world’s poorest communities, in ways that bring people together and build on different expertise and experiences.
World Vision is an international, child-focused, community based, Christian organisation, which works with people of all faiths or none. It has offices in nearly 100 countries around the world. Our aim is to increase the well-being of some of the world’s most vulnerable children and their communities. World Vision operates mainly in countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East, working with communities on long term development programmes, humanitarian responses and policy and advocacy work to improve and strengthen systems and essential service provision.
How to cite: Garrett, J.: Empowered World View - bringing faith and science together to reduce risks, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-21315, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-21315, 2020.
In the framework of ERASMUS+ program Key Action “Cooperation for innovation and the exchange of good practices” with an Action Type “Strategic Partnerships for vocational education and training”, our project TRack Your ATmosphere (TRYAT) was approved in august 2017 and is co-funded by the European Union. The projects total duration is 35 months and the participants are teachers, researchers and students from three vocational schools and Research/University Institutes in France, Germany and Italy.
The project is going to end next August 2020. Here we present the final report on the achieved objectives.
The main research goal of TRYAT is a combination of processing and analysis of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) data and monitoring of environmental parameters for vocational education and training (VET). Permanent high-precision GNSS stations currently operate for geodetic purposes, e.g. geodynamics, earthquake and volcano monitoring, etc. We want to capitalize and highly disseminate the fact that they also offer a reliable tool for remote sensing the atmospheric water vapour. Three professional GNSS stations and low-cost weather stations have been installed on the roof of the buildings of Lycée Saint Cricq (Pau, France), Lise-Meitner-Schule (Berlin, Germany) and Istituto Leonardo da Vinci (Naples, Italy).
We show the achievements so far for each expected intellectual Output (O).
O1- Learning Plattform.
The Learning Web Platform is an interactive and versatile tool. It helps learners, teachers, researchers and other involved personnel to crosslink, enhance intercultural teambuilding and work on the related technological and environmental issues. The platform gives even access to online real-time and archived data, maps, evaluation and graphical visualization.
O2- Starter Kit.
We have been realizing a starter kit of a system to acquire and manage data from both GNSS and weather stations. The kit enables us testing not only the technology, but even the concept itself.
O3- OER Learning Material ‘Physical and Technical Foundations’.
It is an interactive physics course where students learn the foundations of three relevant main topics of the project: satellite technology, propagation of waves and physics of the atmosphere. The corresponding competences are elaborated for the use in different VET curricula.
O4- OER Learning Material 'Informatics and Electrical Engineering'.
We have developed an interactive learning unit (“learning environment”) with focus on informatics and electronics. The students are given just a problem, namely the collecting of environmental data. This problem is proposed to them in the form of an order from industry “Monitoring of renewable energy plant – measuring wind and sun strength as well as the electrical power”.
O5- Educational videos.
A series of 5-minute long videos have been realizing in all the official languages of the participating countries. The videos deal with the scientific subjects pertaining the project and report on the results themselves, and the way the student worked as teams to achieve them. Different subtopics will be presented in short videos, as a desirable way of dissemination.
How to cite: Reusch, B., Hoffmann, C., Sander, U., Wiebalck, S., Verdier, L., Metref, W., Joly, D., Dransart, A., Incollingo, A., Longo, P., Alshawaf, F., Dick, G., Riccardi, U., Brandi, G., Dolce, M., Duilio, D., Martino, C., and Tammaro, U.: TRack Your ATmosphere: Open Learning Materials for Vocational Education and Training. Final Report., EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-20901, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-20901, 2020.
The cult of the mountains, the wind and the request for “good rain” constitute today, the fusion of pre-Hispanic religious beliefs and meteorological knowledge in the agricultural development of central Mexico. Understanding this cult of the earth, from an indigenous perspective, led by certain specialists who have extensive knowledge of the landscape and meteorology, called Tiemperos, is a fundamental and necessary feature for the development of atmospheric sciences and the inclusion of rural villages in environmental research, carried out in certain areas of Mexico.
Understanding the world in which these specialists are inserted is complex if one does not have a joint vision of the ethnographic data and the social relevance that the Tiemperos have on the communities. During 2018 I carried out an investigation on the request of rain and “good weather” rituals that are carried out year after year in certain areas of central Mexico. From that initiative I developed an educational model and a prototype weather station that could be designed, built and adapted to the needs of each community, considering the traditions and teachings of the local Tiempero. Making use of microcontrollers, basic electronics, and a traditional indigenous technique, each station was built and designed with the people of the community where it would be installed, with the idea of involving and enriching scientific meteorological knowledge, which could be useful for each community. The project, still in development, included meteorological stations designed by me and built by the communities, a series of educational exercises for children involved in the project and the proposal of a “good weather” ritual using the data collected by the meteorological stations, with the intention of using technology and science-based information with traditional indigenous practices giving way to new forms of research and inclusion of science in remote communities in Mexico.
How to cite: Duran, C.: TIEMPEROS. Meteorological specialists from the pre-Hispanic indigenous cosmogony of Mexico, and the use of technology to promote atmospheric sciences. , EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-21044, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-21044, 2020.
Sierra Leone is one of the world’s poorest countries and has been so for over 40 years. It is currently ranked by the IMF as the tenth poorest country with a per capita GDP of $505. In recent years it has been ravaged by civil war (1991-2002) and paralysed by the Ebola virus. Yet it is a country rich in mineral resources – in particular diamonds, thus an economy highly dependent upon geoscientific knowledge. Sierra Leone therefore serves as an illustration of other African countries also rich in mineral resources. At The Faraday Institute for Science and Religion in Cambridge we are engaged in research into the relationship between Science, Faith and Human flourishing. However, in Sierra Leone the application of geoscientific knowledge is not leading to human flourishing. In fact the reverse is true. Maconachie, writing in 2012, states that ‘today, some of the worst poverty in Sierra Leone is concentrated in diamond mining towns’. In this particular context therefore the application of geoscience prevents human flourishing, a topic discussed elsewhere as the ‘resource curse’. It is suggested that an appropriate solution can be found in the concept of a ‘preferential option for the poor’ rooted in a Christian understanding of God’s priority for the poor.
Diamonds have been mined in Sierra Leone since the 1930’s and in 2016 it was Africa’s seventh largest diamond producer and diamond exports made the largest contribution to the GDP. Much of the mining is alluvial and the deposits, distributed over several thousand km2, are impossible to police. This has led to widespread illegal artisanal mining, extreme social exploitation through patronage, diamond smuggling, the funding and prolonging of a civil war. Further, legally exported diamonds yield a very low return to the local economy and there is a lack of economic transparency.
The fact that mining was not included in the UN 1992 Agenda 21, the Agenda for Sustainable Development means that the minerals industry globally is controlled almost entirely by the ‘free play of a market that is interested primarily in profits’. Recent models of sustainable development challenge this view and now see people as a part of the total ecosystem, so success is measured in terms of its long term contribution to human flourishing and will be expressed in respectful and authentic relationships at a local level between a mine and its community.
At a governmental level Sierra Leone is seeking to adopt the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative requiring greater corporate and social responsibility on the part of mining companies. This initiative, which has received a renewed emphasis under President Bio, is designed to ensure that the ‘natural resource wealth becomes an engine for sustainable economic growth and poverty eradication in Sierra Leone’. However, it is unclear whether a governmental initiative can generate suitable authentic relationships at a local level. It is suggested here that locally based faith communities, where natural networks already exist, can play a better role in generating long-term authentic relationships between mine and community to foster human flourishing.
How to cite: Rollinson, H.: Ethical Challenges for Mineral Resource Extraction in Sierra Leone, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2636, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2636, 2020.
The scientific community has a long history of self-regulation, with accepted public standards regarding the ethical conduct of research, treatment of human subjects and plagiarism. Violations of these widely accepted standards have been investigated and enforced via universities, funding agencies and publishers using their employment, financial and copyright relationships with members of the scientific community. Some modicum of fairness protecting both sides of the relationship arises from an open process, the ability of either party to seek other partners for their work and public shaming of miscarriages of justice committed by either side. By focusing directly on scientific work and the evidence used to support it where scientific expertise is relevant; these standards have worked reasonably well in keeping science honest without silencing scholars whose work is not currently accepted by the mainstream. Such science is by definition self-correcting and warrants public faith in the integrity of its findings.
Recently, these standards have been expanded into broad Codes of Conduct including regulation of behavior normally reserved for national legal systems built on clearly defined constitutional due process rights, which professional societies lack the jurisdiction, expertise, resources and will to protect. While lacking legal authority, the shadow tribunals these codes create have significant ability to impact the careers of those accused of transgressing their dictates. Such extra-legal bodies, often staffed by non-scientists serving as investigator, prosecutor, judge and jury, undermine academic freedom and the expression of diverse ideas required for a healthy, inclusive scientific community. Instead of being judged on their research, scientists now risk being bullied out of the field on the basis of social considerations reflecting the opinion of unelected code compliance officers acting to fulfill the agenda of professional society leaders rather than those officials elected to enforce national laws. These behavioral tribunals are the anti-thesis of scientific practice and threaten to undermine public faith in the integrity of science.
This presentation examines several cases from the recent scientific literature. The merits of each case are evaluated using the professional society code of conduct applied to the scientists in question, with outcomes for the parties involved and wider implications of the case discussed. The results suggest that professional society codes of conduct remain capable of assessing the merits of scientific research though social pressure to favor particular demographic groups is undermining the process. The same analysis indicates that professional societies are not competent in assessing behavior via their codes of conduct due to fundamentally flawed investigatory mechanisms and lack of due process protections. Strong biases in society leadership allows misuse of codes of conduct to unlawfully impose a policy agenda on the community, despite evidence that such policy is at odds with, and harmful to, scientific practice. Public belief in the integrity of science will erode if the scientific community fails to disavow and halt the misuse of professional society codes of conduct to regulate behavior in a fashion that no national legal system would condone.
How to cite: Moosavi, S.: Professional Society Codes of Conduct: Their Use & Misuse – An Ethical Problem Upon Which the Integrity of Science Rests, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1845, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-1845, 2020.
Idle rural residential land (IRRL) is an important manifestation of changes in the human-land relationship during rural development. Studies on this topic are an important field in the study of sustainable land use, but quantitative analyses of IRRL in the academic community are still lacking. In this paper, we take the Pinggu, which has rapid urbanization, to analyse the spatial differentiation of IRRL and explore the spatial differentiation in the impact of different factors on IRRL. Results showed that IRRL was a common phenomenon in metropolitan suburbs with rapid urbanization. It had a spatial pattern of "one belt, three cores" in Pinggu, and its scale decreased from southeast to northwest. Industrial areas, semi-mountain ecotourism areas and urban fringe areas were the high-incidence areas of IRRL, while the idle rate of rural residential land in mountainous areas and plain agricultural areas was relatively low. The IRRL was the result of a combination of different factors, and there were differences among the different factors and regions. The transfer of rural labour, non-agriculturalization of industrial structure and mode of production and lifestyle caused by urbanization and industrialization were the major driving forces, and the lagging village planning and imperfect land use system increased the risk of IRRL. Our study contributes to filling the gap in quantitative research on IRRL to enrich the land use research system by exploring the interaction between humans and land in rural areas and thus has significance for rural restructuring and sustainable use of land in China.
How to cite: Zhou, T.: Neglected idle rural residential land (IRRL): A challenge in achieving rural restructuring in metropolitan suburbs, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-1573, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-1573, 2020.
Competition among different uses for land is becoming acute under the process of urbanization, and conflicts related to this competition are becoming more frequent and more complex. This article presents a methodology for confronting this issue. By applying an integrated framework, we explore the implicit role of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Regional Integration (BRI) policy in land use conflicts by focusing on the urban-rural interface, and try to address the research question: “How feasible is BRI for reconciling land use conflicts across the urban-rural interface?” An original structure of the analysis is developed based on the identification of three types of conflicts, namely, conflicts over land use structure, conflicts over land conversion and conflicts over landscape pattern. According to the interactions and relationships among these conflicts, we define broad categories of land use conflict areas. Indeed, these conflicts are all related to the unplanned use of agricultural land reserves, which competes with other more immediate uses, and the over-exploitation of land resources caused by unsustainable urban practices. This policy is clearly a critical objective for optimizing the land use structure. It, however, fails to reconcile the conflicts over land conversion and landscape pattern, especially for considerable agricultural land conversion to non-agricultural uses, and low-density development pattern with mixed residential and industrial land uses. Hence, alternative strategies involving public participation, spatial equity, rural revitalization, land-use system reform, and new type of urbanization, can be identified as viable solutions for land use conflict management, which may be complementary to regional integration. The findings of our paper may also contribute to the policy debate on BRI concerning land use planning and regional sustainability.
How to cite: Ma, W.: How feasible is Regional Integration for reconciling land use conflicts across the urban-rural interface? Evidence from Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei metropolitan region in China, EGU General Assembly 2020, Online, 4–8 May 2020, EGU2020-2298, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-egu2020-2298, 2020.