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IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC)

Advancing knowledge and cooperation for a healthy ocean and prosperous society

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Training Course on Remote Sensing-based Seagrass Blue Carbon Assessment

Jakarta, Indonesia, 23 September - 4 October 2024

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The UNESCO/IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC) and the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) of Indonesia are pleased to call for qualified participants in the RTRC-MarBEST training course on Remote Sensing based Seagrass Blue Carbon Assessment, 23 September – 4 October 2024, Jakarta, Indonesia.

1. Background

“Blue carbon” refers to organic carbon, which is captured and stored by the ocean and coastal ecosystems. Blue carbon has been increasingly recognized by government leaders globally as a promising nature-based solution to mitigating climate change.

Seagrass is one of the world’s most effective carbon sinks, with great potential to contribute to climate change mitigation strategies.  Seagrass often form extensive underwater meadows, some of which are so large that conventional manual sampling technique may not well cover their spatial dimension. Remote sensing provides a cost-effective solution as it can cover very large areas (even at a global scale) with different temporal dimension (from months to decades). Thus, it could be used to determine habitat extent, stratification and plot design, above-ground biomass, and analyse land use and carbon stock change over time for national carbon accounting.

2. Objectives

To enhance research capacity for seagrass blue carbon assessment using remote sensing, and eventually assist Member States in achieving the SDG 13: Climate action and SDG14: Life below water.

3. Time and venue

The training will take place from 23 September to 4 October 2024, consisting of one-week Online Lectures using the Learning Management System (LMS) from home countries of participants, and one-week Hands-on Training and Fieldwork in Seribu Islands, Jakarta, Indonesia.

4. Training contents

This RTRC training will involve theory lectures, practical demonstrations, hands-on activities, and field surveys, covering the following aspects:

  • Understanding blue carbon: Gain knowledge about blue carbon, blue carbon ecosystems, carbon storage and sequestration, and their importance for climate change mitigation.
  • Field sampling techniques: Learn and apply field sampling techniques, including photo quadrat, soil core sampling, and the estimation of seagrass above ground carbon stock (AGC), and soil carbon stock.
  • Remote sensing: Prepare remote sensing data and perform image correction.
  • Benthic habitat mapping: Map benthic habitats using machine learning classification and field benthic habitat data
  • Empirical modelling: Develop empirical models by integrating machine learning regression with field seagrass AGC data
  • AGC mapping and assessment:  Map seagrass AGC and perform accuracy assessment
  • Carbon stock calculation: Calculate the total AGC, and combine it with soil carbon stock obtained from lab analysis

5. Application

Interested participants can fill in the online Application Form, together with the Recommendation Form to be signed by a referee, and submit online by mid-night of 31 July 2024 (Bangkok Time, GMT+7).

Only selected participants will be contacted through email by mid-August 2024.

6. Qualifications for becoming a participant Early career ocean professionals, including students, from Member States[1] in the Western Pacific, South-South Triangular Cooperation as well as the Archipelagic and Island States (AIS).
  • Have a basic concept of blue carbon;
  • Familiar with sampling and data collection of seagrass habitats in shallow coastal areas;
  • Have preliminary understanding and knowledge in using GIS and spatial data processing (GEE would be an advantage).
[1] Member States of WESTPAC is available at: https://ioc-westpac.org/member-states/

7. Contact

For any inquiries, please feel free to contact:

Ms Sofia Yuniar Sani
Research Center for Oceanography,
The National Research and Innovation Agency, the Republic of Indonesia (BRIN)
E-mail: sofi005@brin.go.id; sofiayuniarsani@gmail.com

With a copy to:

IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC)
Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO
E-mail: iocwestpac@unesco.org

Interested participants can fill in the online Application Form, together with the Recommendation Form to be signed by a referee, and submit online by mid-night of 31 July 2024 (Bangkok Time, GMT+7).

Only selected participants will be contacted through email by mid-August 2024.

The program will be available in September 2024.