A delegation, made up of four scientists from national institutions, joined the work of the ship that will travel the world as part of the “One Ocean” international expedition. The research team set sail from Puerto Williams.
On April 22, the sailboat Statsraad Lehmkuhl (a vessel that is off the coast of Chile studying the effects of climate change,) docked in the city of Puerto Montt.
The Statsraad Lehmkuhl is a Norwegian sailboat that is over 100 years old. Refurbished to function as a training ship and support research work, it travels the seas in the manner of ancient sailing ships, where its crew members must stand guard and sleep in hammocks.
The ship set sail on August 20 from Norway as part of the “One Ocean Expedition,” a campaign that is part of the United Nations (UN) Decade of Ocean Sciences for Sustainable Development, which will circumnavigate the planet traveling more than 55 thousand nautical miles and will visit 36 ports.
In the first days of April, the ship reached the city of Puerto Williams, from where it began its journey north along the Chilean coast. Dr. Juan Höfer, oceanographer at the Center for Dynamic Research of High Latitude Marine Ecosystems (IDEAL) of the Austral University of Chile (UACh) and academic at the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaíso (PUCV), was invited by the Norwegian Polar Institute to be part of this tour.
Dr. Höfer, one of the four researchers that made up the Chilean delegation, shared with professionals from Norway, Argentina and Uruguay during the Puerto Williams-Puerto Montt journey. During the trip, the scientists participated in a workshop that is part of the action plan launched on April 12 as part of the activities of the Decade of the Oceans.
“It was very stimulating and inspiring to participate in a workshop on board such a special ship while sailing the beautiful coasts of southern Chile. The workshop served as a catalyst to plan a series of projects and ideas to be developed in the coming years. One of our main activities was to meet with different colleagues to see how, through a collaborative effort, we can create an action plan to study and protect the Southern Ocean during this period,” mentioned the researcher.
Despite unfavorable weather conditions, the team of experts managed to collect microplastic samples from the sub-Antarctic zone and record the conditions of the Southern Ocean.
The Statsraad Lehmkuhl will continue to travel along the Chilean coast to the city of Valparaíso, from where it will cross to Tahiti, in Oceania, fulfilling the objective of circumnavigating the planet