Ecologists unite to address global challenges

08/11/05

Major ecological societies to aid scientists in developing world

The recent meeting of the G8 raised major ecological challenges, many of them affecting the developing world. Now, the Presidents of 13 ecological societies have pledged to support ecologists in the developing world to provide regional solutions to these environmental challenges.

Hosted by the Ecological Society of America (ESA) and the British Ecological Society (BES), a meeting of ecological society Presidents, representing nearly 30,000 ecologists worldwide, agreed to develop concrete ways to reach out to ecologists in developing countries.

"The major environmental challenges faced by developing nations will require new scientific understanding as well as infrastructure and tools," said ESA President Jerry Melillo. ESA will focus its efforts in the Americas with a special emphasis on young ecologists in Latin America.

BES President Alastair Fitter said, "The BES will build on its existing support of developing countries by adding a further one million dollars over five years to build infrastructure where none exists."

In addition, through INTECOL, the Presidents will continue working together to further develop communication and collaboration between their societies to address environmental challenges faced by all nations on Earth.

The meeting of the Presidents took place during the Ecological Society of America's and INTECOL's joint meeting held in Montréal, Canada August 7 – 12, 2005. Countries represented at the Presidents' meeting included Australia, Austria, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Spain, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

For more information about the ESA-INTECOL Meeting activities, visit: www.esa.org/montreal. The theme of the meeting is "Ecology at multiple scales," and some 4,000 scientists are expected to attend.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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