Marine Environmental Expedition of ”Friends of the Baltic” Started on June 20th 2012.

June 20th , 2012 a twin hull sailing boat “Harlequin” set off the bank of Sidorovsky channel in the town of Lomonosov with the members of children environmental expedition of “Friends of the Baltic” onboard. In next four days the expedition will sail from Lomonosov via Kronshtadt to Vyborg, will take samples and study condition and properties of water in the Gulf of Finland and in Vyborg archipelago, as well as make the nature observations in the coastal areas.

Children environmental expedition was initiated by youth organization ”Friends of the Baltic” in co-operation with Center for Children’s Creativity “Craftsmen’s City” of Petrodvoretz district and the crew of twin hull sailing boat “Harlequin” from Strelna yacht-club. Pupils together with teachers will examine the aquatorium of the Gulf of Finland and the islands of the Vyborg archipelago. In the same time for some kids the expedition is also an opportunity to try themselves as sailors on the sailing boat. And who knows, perhaps it may influence their choice of the future career?

Young ecologists will study zooplankton, water transparency, temperature, salinity and other properties of the sea water. Special attention will be paid to the condition of the coastal zones and the islands: availability of the shoreline, buildings and houses on the shore, sanitary condition and garbage on the territories and so on.

Marine research expeditions on sailing boats have a great advantage in examining the coastal zones and islands due to their minimal impact on the coastal ecosystems: a sailing boat when moving without an engine does not make a noise and does not pollute water and air with emissions.

Children environmental expedition 2012 continues the tradition of marine study trips and actions organized by ”Friends of the Baltic” in co-operation with partner organizations. In 2005 an information environmental campaign “Live Baltic” took place in St.Petersburg with the support of the international Coalition Clean Baltic. Campaign participants – representatives of local environmental NGOs, journalists and researchers – have visited nine towns on the shore of the Gulf of Finland while sailing on the twin hull sailing boat “Centaurus-II”. They prepared excursions and interactive events for local people, pupils and students, organized a round table for the local authorities, media and NGOs.

In 2008 young ecologists, members of school ecological clubs of St.Petersburg and Leningrad region took part in the international study project ”A Man and a Sea”. Kids set off to the Gulf of Finland, studied zoobenthos, physical properties of the water, took samples of sediments, made environmental assessment of the coastal zones. School research work in the basin of the Gulf of Finland continues in the framework of the “River Watch” program, which is being lead in St.Petersburg and Leningrad region by “Friends of the Baltic”.

We hope that such unusual and exciting events as a real marine study expedition will allow schoolchildren to look at the coastal nature from a new angle and to learn a bit more how to understand and protect our fragile and fantastic Baltic Sea.

For more information please contact Olga Senova +7 (921) 911 79 86

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