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Science demands a future in Portugal – Weekend

Science demands a future in Portugal – Weekend

The sea is Francisco Leitao’s “office”. There, this marine biologist spends a significant portion of his time conducting applied research in the fisheries sector. He works at the Marine Science Center at the University of the Algarve, and most of his research, before arriving at the lab, involves accompanying fishermen on their work, diving or collecting samples.

Part of the research he is conducting, with other scientists, aims to study fish stocks on the Portuguese coast. He has already managed to change the laws. He explained: “We launched a study that contributed to lifting the ban on crab fishing.”

This scientific work is relevant to understanding what our food system will look like in a few decades. In the Ecoreach research group, where Francisco Leitao is one of the coordinators, the Clima-Pesca project has been developed, consisting of a partnership between scientists and fishermen. “We traveled from northern to southern Portugal to understand the problems plaguing this sector, and combined the information collected with mid-century fishing forecasts, taking into account the impact of climate change on marine resources.”

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