2nd Monaco Ocean Week: Cetaceans in the spotlight to enhance the preservation of the marine biodiversity
«The oceans are precious, let us protect them», the official motto of the second edition of the Monaco Ocean Week (@MOW2018), from April 8th to 14th 2018, reaffirms the strong engagement of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation and its major international partners on the global protection of the oceans as a key source of an environmentally friendly blue economy.
In this context, on the 10th of April there was the opening an exclusive sensorial 23-photo exhibition which will be welcoming all visitors (until the 11th May) at the Galerie des pêcheurs, close to the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco (@OceanoMonaco). Playing as a photo-voice, an artistic HD photo gallery taken by marine biologists during their scientific expedition, pushes the audience to reflect and debate about the state of health of dolphins, whales and sperm whales which are floating in the waters of a specific area of the Mediterranean Sea, measuring 87,500 sq. km, between the Principality of Monaco, Italy and France. The Pelagos Sanctuary is just the result of a tripartite international agreement, signed in 1999 (and entered into force in 2002), aimed at protecting marine mammals from any possible risk which is involving those special «ambassadors» of the Mediterranean ecosystem. Underwater noise, chemical pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, are some of the major dangers that are menacing their survival.
«Raising eco-awareness through a balanced mixture of data and visual elements is the core mission of this exhibition which shows pure sea life facing human impacts», declared Florence Descroix-Comanducci, Executive Secretary of ACCOBAMS, the International Agreement on the Conservation of Cetaceans in the Black Sea, Mediterranean Sea and Contiguous Atlantic Area, based in Monaco since 1996. Any photo detail allows us to test an original close encounter with cetaceans in their natural habitat, increasingly invaded by heavy sea transport vessels whose noise emissions often disorient the marine mammals.
«Informing the public on the vital role played by the different species of cetaceans and how we are safeguarding them as part of the largest international protected marine area is crucial», stressed Fannie Dubois, Executive Secretary of the Pelagos Agreement.
A special occasion to be more eco-responsible and take actions to improve the cross-border scientific interoperability as stated by the iconic Memorandum of Understanding signed between ACCOBAMS and Pelagos Sanctuary in the presence of H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco and Ségolène Royal, Ambassador of North and South Poles. Through this key document the Permanent Secretariat of the Pelagos Agreement, recently set up in Monaco, commits itself to facilitate the fulfilment of the resolutions within the ACCOBAMS through innovative actions approved by Member States.
«The beauty of this visual expo testify how science can move towards art for a more sustainable future», concluded Aurelie Moulins, researcher in marine ecology at the CIMA (Centro Internazionale in Monitoraggio Ambiental – Environment Monitoring International Centre) Research Foundation, sponsor of the event.
Monaco Ocean Week: www.monacooceanweek.org
Pelagos Sanctuary: www.sanctuaire-pelagos.org
ACCOBAMS International Agreement: www.accobams.org
CIMA International Research Foundation: www.cimafoundation.org