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BIOGEOMON 2024 held in Puerto Rico for 1st time at UPR

The Biogeomon 2024 International Symposium on biogeochemical processes and ecosystem behaviors was hosted for the first time in a tropical location last week, the University of Puerto Rico, underscoring the significance of tropical ecosystems in global research.

The 11th edition of the symposium gathered global experts in biogeochemistry to discuss and explore critical issues related to environmental sustainability.

The Alma de Bahía Foundation, a nonprofit that works closely with Bahía Beach Resort and other entities to protect the environment and promote education and community work, was among the presenters. The event attracted 140 scientists from around the world.

“Being a participant in Biogeomon 2024 has been an invaluable opportunity to share our preliminary findings and learn from leaders in the field of biogeochemistry,” said Marcela Cañón, executive director of the Alma de Bahia Foundation.

“Our contribution to the study of the Espíritu Santo River highlights the importance of collaborative and applied research for sustainable natural resource management, as well as the complexity and importance of our local ecosystems,” she added.

The symposium, organized by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the University of New Hampshire, the University of Puerto Rico, the Luquillo Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) program and the Forest Service Tropical Forestry Institute, served as a platform for discussions on geological, chemical and biological ecosystem management.

Cañon, along with University of New Hampshire Prof. William McDowell and University of Puerto Rico Prof. Jorge Ortiz-Zayas, presented a poster showing early results from their Espíritu Santo River study in northeastern Puerto Rico, a region that includes the Espíritu Santo Nature Reserve and El Yunque National Forest.

The LTER project, started in 2018, has been key to understanding the river dynamics and its coastal impact. The data include insights on saltwater flow and its role in beach preservation, vital for managing watersheds and coastal ecosystems.

“The Alma de Bahía Foundation’s participation in Biogeomon 2024 is a testament to the support of environmental research and our commitment to biodiversity conservation in Puerto Rico,” said Rolando Padua, president of the Alma de Bahía Foundation.

“We’re proud to collaborate with institutions such as the University of New Hampshire, the University of Puerto Rico and the Luquillo LTER program, demonstrating that synergy between local and national organizations is critical to addressing today’s environmental challenges,” he added.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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