Sandwatch E-News 4: Bequia Students Begin Using the Sandwatch International Database
During September 10 & 11th the Caribbean island of Bequia witnessed a flurry of activity related to Sandwatch. Over those two days nine teachers and 21 students gained hands-on experience working with the Sandwatch International Database. Under the guidance of Dr. Dave Gray, these Sandwatch participants laid the foundation for their use of the database and began entering data. At the conclusion of the workshop, 10 beaches had been set-up in the database and everyone was ready to start their school year and collect more data to add to the database.
The new “Sandwatch manual: adapting to climate change and educating for sustainable development” was launched at a Sandwatch regional workshop held in Seychelles 4-8 October 2010 and at the United Nations Climate Change Conference, Cancún, Mexico, 29 November – 10 December 2010. (This conference was the 16th Conference of Parties (COP 16) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change).
Hans Thulstrup, of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) Small Islands and Indigenous Knowledge Section, introduced the new Sandwatch manual at the COP 16 side-event on Understanding climate change: success stories in awareness-raising and education, 3 December 2010, Cancún, Mexico. Many of the delegates at COP 16 were extremely interested in the new manual.
In September 2010 the Sandwatch Founda-tion joined together with the Environmentally Safe Aggregates Tarawa (ESAT) Project to launch Sandwatch in Kiribati. The ESAT project aims to combat coastal ero-sion on the densely populated atoll, Tarawa, and provide an alternative supply of building material through environmentally safe lagoon dredging. Other key players in the launch of Sandwatch were the Curriculum Development Resource Centre of the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resource Development, and the UNESCO Cluster Office for the Pacific States.