As mentioned numerous times, climate change affects every corner of the earth. In some places, due to their latitude or their conditions, there are areas that are more vulnerable to the effects of climate change and others are more resistant.
The Chilean region of Magallanes and Antarctica, in the extreme south of America, offers exceptional conditions to study the effects of climate change. This is something that science must take advantage of to obtain better results and greater knowledge about possible actions and consequences.
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The southernmost area of the planet
Located 3.000 kilometers south of Santiago is the city of Punta Arenas. It is the epicenter of the scientific missions that operate in Magellan and Antarctica. It is the southernmost area of the planet and is reaching a good maturity to become a subantarctic and Antarctic scientific pole.
Climate change and marine environment research
Making these regions a scientific and technological pole of world scope responds to the fact that the current phenomenon of climate variability has impacts on the areas of the Center for Dynamic Research on High Latitude Marine Ecosystems (IDEAL).
Carrying out studies and analyzes in this region from a scientific point of view allows obtaining a lot of valuable information related to all the changes that are happening due to climate change. Among the studies carried out in this region is to find out how climate change affects the marine environment. Increases in temperatures, high concentrations of CO2 in the atmosphere, cause impacts on the oceans. For example, we find coral bleaching, water acidification and the destruction of habitats of species that are more vulnerable to changes in the environment.
Precisely, the most vulnerable areas are those that must be studied in more detail, as they are the ones that offer the most information about how changes can affect the species that live there. Thanks to a greater response to environmental changes, more experiments and tests can be done to gain a better understanding of the consequences.
Marine ecosystems must be protected
Having good results from experiments in these areas allows authorities to make certain decisions that can protect marine ecosystems. If we have more or less exact knowledge about the consequences that a certain effect can have on a species, we can take measures to protect that species.
An example of all this is the retreat of glaciers in some fjords in the area. This effect causes the fresh water in the thawed area to enter the marine environment and change the chemical and biological properties. Species that need a certain concentration of salt to live, will not be able to resist these changes and will die.
Since it is difficult to go back on climate change issues, What more needs to be done is to find solutions to the problems that arise. Viable solutions that help the adaptation of marine environments to climate change.
Environmental education as a solution tool
Educating the little ones to take responsibility for the environment is a tool to be able to solve the environmental problems derived from climate change. It should be mentioned that, if we train people capable of researching, analyzing and making pro-environmental decisions, We will promote global awareness for respect for the environment. All this will contribute in a more positive way to alleviate the consequences of climate change.
If we want young people to get involved in science, we need environmental education. The fact that Chile has suitable Antarctic and subantarctic systems in the southern zone for research may lead to the emergence of resources from other countries and international organizations, as occurs with astronomical observation in the north of the country. Currently, the High Latitude Marine Ecosystem Dynamic Research Center (IDEAL) is one of the most active scientific entities in the area, with a team of 25 researchers from different institutions.