[PAST EVENT] Deep-sea conservation and environmental management: a new frontier

March 29, 2013
VIMS - Watermen's Hall, McHugh Auditorium
1375 Greate Road
Gloucester Point, VA 23062Map this location
Presenter: Dr. Cindy Lee Van Dover, Director of the Duke Marine Lab, Duke University

Reception at 3:00 p.m. in the lobby of Watermen's Hall
Seminar from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in McHugh Auditorium

Dr. Van Dover is a deep-sea biologist with an interest in ocean exploration and the ecology of chemosynthetic ecosystems. She began in this field in 1982, joining the first biological expedition to hydrothermal vents on the East Pacific Rise. After earning a master's degree in ecology from UCLA in 1985, she continued in the MIT/Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution Joint Program in Biological Oceanography and received her Ph.D. in 1989. Dr. Van Dover qualified as the only woman pilot of deep-diving submersible ALVIN in 1990 and was pilot-in-command of 48 dives. Her work with ALVIN and other deep-submergence vehicles has taken her to vent fields in the Atlantic and Pacific, deep-water seamounts, seeps, and other significant seafloor features. Her current research focuses primarily on the study of biodiversity and biogeography of invertebrates from chemosynthetic ecosystems and invertebrate functional anatomy. She has published more than 70 articles in peer-reviewed journals and is an active participant and Chief Scientist in NSF-and NOAA-sponsored field programs to hydrothermal vents and other chemosynthetic environments.

The deep sea has long been a frontier for exploration science and technology, but even as our understanding of the deep ocean remains nascent, commercial interests in deep-seabed resources--oil and gas, minerals, genetic--are rapidly advancing. Energy extraction from the seabed of continental margins continues to into deeper waters, and there are now companies queueing for licenses and leases for seafloor massive sulfides, manganese nodules, and cobalt crusts. The environmental impacts of mineral extraction are not well understood, and the toolkit for deep-sea environmental management is undeveloped. Multiple-stakeholder engagement, industry-academia partnerships, spatial management tools, restoration, adaptive management, and integrated ecosystem assessment will be introduced as elements of environmental management that should be included in environmental regulations for exploitation developed by the International Seabed Authority.

[[seitz, Rochelle Seitz]] at 804-684-7698