Marine pollution in Rio: Global issues, local impacts

Botafogo Cove, Rio de Janeiro.
Credit: Ricardo Gomes

Rio de Janeiro is a highly urbanized coastal city, where the marine environment is ecologically and economically important for fishery activities, vessel transportation, and recreation. In addition, the coastal and marine waters of Rio are highly impacted by industrial and urban sewage dumps and pollution released by vessels and industrial plants. Considering the increase in the frequency of pollutants released and urban expansion, monitoring and evaluating spatial and temporal contaminants occurrence and kinetics in this coastal marine environment provide crucial information for ecosystem management and conservation, which will aid decision-making for avoiding damage to the public health and the environment.

The main goals of this workshop are to engage scientists, stakeholders, and society in environmental monitoring and cleaning actions and encourage the development and application of methods to evaluate and clean marine ecosystems. These goals will be achieved during the proposed workshop by presenting short expositions about the steps necessary to understand and manage coastal marine environments, especially those from the State of Rio de Janeiro.

Specific objectives include: connecting scientists who research the different components of the marine ecosystem in Rio de Janeiro; promoting efforts for monitoring pollution on the marine environment of Rio de Janeiro; and showcasing and exemplifying how scientific information produced locally can be used to monitor and clean the marine environment, and how these efforts aid the avoidance of environmental degradation and diminish the impacts of pollution on the marine ecosystems of Rio de Janeiro. Further, this Activity aims to catalyze the development of citizen science methods and programs connecting scientists with policymakers and local social initiatives.

One of the most iconic and economically important marine environments in Rio de Janeiro is Guanabara Bay. This estuary is one of the most studied marine ecosystems globally, being impacted by several anthropic pressures. Although these pressures have been changing the environment over time, it still shows signs of resilience and sustains a strong local community with several ecosystem services. This event will bring together scientists and stakeholders to look carefully at what we have achieved up to now and how we can move forward to evaluate pollution issues at Guanabara Bay, Sepetiba Bay, and marine ecosystems in adjacent coastal areas of Rio de Janeiro.

With this purpose, participants will be encouraged to discuss the main pollution pressures on marine environments in Rio, their synergisms, as well as the advantages of new technologies and methods, citizen science, participative management, and public policies against marine pollution, to evaluate and mitigate environmental pollution, aiming for a clean ocean.

This workshop is a Satellite Activity of the Laboratory "A Clean Ocean" of the Ocean Decade

Check the Workshop!

Date: November 18, 2021

Time: 14h30 (BRT)

Catedra's Youtube channel

Meet the participants

Alexander Turra

Full professor at the Oceanographic Institute of the University of São Paulo and coordinator of the Brazilian UNESCO Chair for Ocean Sustainability.

Simone Pennafirme

PhD in Marine Biology from Fluminense Federal University. Manager of the Marine Life Center of the Environment Secretariat of the City of Rio de Janeiro.

Abílio Soares Gomes

Full professor of the Department of Marine Biology of the Fluminense Federal University.

José Lailson Brito Junior

Adjunct Professor at the State University of Rio de Janeiro.

Karen Silverwood-Cope

Specialist in Public Policy and Government Management of the Ministry of Economy in the Federal Government. General Coordinator of Ocean, Antarctica and Geosciences at the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovations since 2019.

Leonardo Martins Barreira

PhD in Ocean Engineering from COPPE-UFRJ. Captain of Sea and War, Navy Reserve, and Director of Operations of OceanPact Geosciences.

Leticia Cotrim

Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Oceanography of UERJ.

Luciane Maranho

PhD in Sea Management and Conservation from the Universidad de Cádiz (Spain).

Renato Campello Cordeiro

Associate Professor, Department of Geochemistry, Fluminense Federal University.

Thaiane Maciel

Environmental Engineer at UFRJ and creator of Canal Novo Mundo.