» Oceanographic and Biological features in the Canary Current Large Marine Ecosystem
20.07.2015 - Natural Sciences Sector

Oceanographic and Biological features in the Canary Current Large Marine Ecosystem

The Canary Current Large Marine Ecosystem (CCLME) is an eastern boundary upwelling system, in fact one of the 4 major upwelling systems in the world. The CCLME extends from the Strait of Gibraltar (around 36°N 5°W) to Bissagos Islands in the South of Guinea-Bissau (around 11°N 16°W), embracing the coasts and Economic Exclusive Zones of Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau and Spain (Canary Islands). Cape Verde and Guinea are also under the area of influence of the Canary Current, and therefore are considered as part of the CCLME in the recently published "Oceanographic and Biological features in the Canary Current Large Marine Ecosystem".

A complete characterization of the CCLME was achieved thanks to the dedication of 54 scientists from 25 institutions who have reviewed the scientific information accumulated in the CCLME during decades. In addition, they have kindly shared their own knowledge obtained after years of hard work in high level scientific research.

An active and fruitful collaboration has been established with our partner in this project, the Instituto Español de Oceanografía (IEO). Twelve of its experts have contributed as authors or co-authors of many of the articles. In their articles they have not only shared their expertise, but the know-how gained by the IEO throughout decades of international cooperation programs with African countries.

Oceanographic and biological features in the Canary Current Large Marine Ecosystem consists in 28 articles structured in the following sections: (i) the ocean geomorphology and geological materials; (ii) the hydrographic structure and the ocean circulation; (iii) the biogeochemical characteristics of the marine environment; (iv) the life in the sea; and (v) the interannual, interdecadal and long-term variability.

The main findings are highlighted in the Executive Summary together with an indication of the gaps left in the scientific knowledge in the CCLME, evoking ideas on the topics in need of a deeper scientific research and managements goals in the CCLME.

Such a complex publication would not be possible without the generous financial support of a donor. The Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID) has funded the project Enhancing oceanography capacities on Western Africa countries.

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