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[caribwa] An Interesting Environmental Ed/Beach Monitoring Proposal

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  • Martin Keeley & Claudette Upton
    Hi everyone -- and welcome to 2000! Hope all survived the season with the usual festive pleasures! This is my first message of the year. It originated from
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 3, 2000
      Hi everyone -- and welcome to 2000! Hope all survived the season with the
      usual festive pleasures!

      This is my first message of the year. It originated from Bruce Potter at
      Island Resources Foundation, and I felt that its content is very relevant
      to the goals of Caribwa and the NMEA. It's a few weeks old, but my e-mail
      was down for almost a month in December, and I'm just now wading through
      the usual backlog of messages.

      My only additional comments on the info below are that the check sheet on
      marine debris to be found at the end of the message is pretty much the
      standard sheet issued by the Centre for Marine Conservation, and the one we
      use here on our regular beach cleans.

      All the best for the coming century....

      Martin Keeley

      >a new project will be launched in the Caribbean
      > Two UNESCO Sectors, the Education Sector and the Natural Sciences
      >Sector are going to launched, on the CSI platform, a new project in the
      >Caribbean Region- the Sandwatch project. Involved in the preparation and
      >coordination of the above project are the Caribbean Sea Project (CSP) and
      > The Caribbean Sea Project (CSP) is an activity of the UNESCO
      >Associated Schools Project (ASP). It focuses on the marine environment,
      >sustainable human development and inter-cultural awareness. The CSP seeks
      >to encourage cooperation among Caribbean Basin territories with a view to
      >enlist young people, their parents and the communities in which they live,
      >to protect and preserve the Caribbean Sea, including the waterways and
      >wetlands linked to it, and to strengthen Caribbean identity.
      > The Coast and Beach Stability in the Caribbean Project (COSALC) is
      >jointly sponsored by UNESCO’s Environment and Development in Coastal
      >Regions and in Small Islands (CSI) and by the University of Puerto Rico Sea
      >Grant College Program. COSALC is a regional project which focuses on the
      >island territories of the Caribbean and seeks to develop in-country
      >capabilities so that island states can measure, assess and manage their
      >beach resources within an overall framework of integrated coastal management.
      > During the ASPnet CSP First Environmental Education Workshop held
      >in Tobago in July, 1998, an idea for a Sandwatch Project was launched, the
      >main goal being to reduce the level of pollution in the Caribbean Sea.
      > In order to try and advance this idea, CSP and COSALC developed a
      >document for presentation to the Fourth Regional Meeting of National
      >Coordinators of the ASPnet CSP (St. Vincent and the Grenadines, 25-27 May,
      > The meeting was held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs conference
      >room in Kingstown, St. Vincent from 25-27th May, 1999.
      > On the 26th May, during the visit to Bequia, the proposal for the
      >Sandwatch project was presented to the participants. There was some
      >discussion regarding the proposal. Most of the participants were
      >enthusiastic about the proposal and considered it a promising way to teach
      >the basic scientific method and to apply it to problem solving at the local
      >community/school level.
      > The workshop report concluded that “The Sandwatch project be
      >implemented at the school level in collaboration with the UNESCO COSALC
      >project based at the University of Puerto Rico, and relevant scientific
      >organizations at the national level. The project is to be student centred
      >and should be officially launched at the regional level with a teacher
      >training workshop in the year 2000.” It was further provisionally agreed
      >that St. Lucia would include the first activity of the Sandwatch project,
      >the teacher training workshop, in their participation programme.
      >For more information, contact
      >Ms. Sandra Gift
      >CSP Coordinator,
      >UNESCO-Port of Spain Office
      >c/o UNDP P.O.Box 812
      >Trinidad and Tobago
      >Fax (1) 8686220536
      >e-mail: S.Gift@...
      >Dr. Gillian Cambers
      >COSALC Coordinator
      >P.O.Box 9011, College Station
      >Mayaguez, Puerto Rico
      >Fax (1) 7872652880
      >e-mail: g_cambers@...
      > The objectives of the Sandwatch project are as follows:
      >(a) To reduce the level of pollution in the Caribbean Sea.
      >(b) To train schoolchildren in the scientific observation of beaches
      >through field measurements and data analysis.
      >(c) To assist schoolchildren, with the help of their local communities, to
      >use the information collected to better manage the region’s beaches.
      > It is anticipated that the project time frame will cover three
      >years. The first major activity will be a teacher training workshop where
      >teachers from the participating territories will be given hands-on training
      >in the methodology of the Sandwatch project. These teachers, on return to
      >their territories, will train other teachers. Scientific organizations at
      >the national level, as well as COSALC counterpart agencies, will be
      >invited to participate in the project by providing students with advice and
      >assistance where needed.
      > Then, over a 12 month period, students at the participating
      >schools will carry out the field measurements and data analysis. During
      >this period they will compile and analyse their data and identify the major
      >problems at their beach sites. At the end of this 12 month period there
      >will be a regional workshop where the students can present their
      >findings. Following this, the students will work with their communities to
      >implement a project to solve or better manage one or more of the beach
      >management problems identified during the data collection period. The
      >measurement protocol started in the first 12 months may be continued during
      >this period to evaluate the effectiveness of the implementation
      >project. At the end of the project there will be a second regional
      >workshop. Table 1 summarizes the project time frame.
      >Table 1. Project Time Frame
      >Time LineActivity
      >Month 1-3Teacher training workshop
      >Month 4-5At the national level, project coordinators identify scientific
      >organizations and COSALC counterpart agencies, to provide advice and
      >assistance where necessary.
      >Month 6-9Launching of the project at the national level.
      >Month 10-22Data collection, compilation, analysis, identification of beach
      >problems, preparation for regional workshop.
      >Month 23-24First regional workshop.
      >Month 25-34Implementation of projects, further data collection for
      >evaluation of project results. Preparation for project presentation at
      >second regional workshop.
      >Month 35-36Second regional workshop.
      >3.1 Teacher training workshop
      > At least one teacher from each of the participating countries will
      >be invited at attend this four day workshop where hands-on training will be
      >given in the methodology to be used in this project. Experience with
      >example beach management projects will also be provided.
      >3.2 Identification of national scientific organizations
      > The coordinators will identify appropriate scientific
      >organizations, experienced professionals and COSALC counterparts in their
      >respective territories. These individuals/agencies will be asked to
      >participate in the project and to act as student advisors.
      >3.3 Field activities
      >3.3.1 Select a beach for observation
      > Each school or group will select a beach for the project. The
      >main criterion for beach selection is accessibility, students should plan
      >to visit the beach and conduct the measurements documented in 3.3.3 to
      >3.3.11 at least once a month over a 6-9 month period.
      >3.3.2 Describe the beach
      > The first activity is to describe the beach, its location and
      >characteristics and to take photographs of the beach. A simple
      >checklist/data sheet will be prepared which will include, but not be
      >limited to the following:
      >· location of the beach: aspect and orientation, distance to nearest
      >town or village, a map location;
      >· preparation of a simple site map showing the main features;
      >· length of the beach: to be measured on a map or in the field with a
      >tape measure;
      >· type of sediment: size, colour and distribution of sand, stones,
      >· type of access to the beach: e.g. by a road or path;
      >· activities behind the beach; e.g. farming, tourism, houses;
      >· activities taking place on the beach: e.g. picnics, recreation,
      > .
      >3.3.3. Measure the beach debris
      > A site (or several sites) will be set up for the measurement of
      >beach debris, a permanent feature behind the beach such as a tree or
      >building can be used to mark the site. The debris will then be measured
      >within a 10 m wide strip starting at this point and continuing across the
      >beach to the water line. The number of measurement sites per beach would
      >depend on the size of the beach and the number of students involved. The
      >natural and man-made debris found in this strip of beach will be collected
      >and documented. A data sheet will be developed, a sample prototype based
      >on categories developed by the Center for Marine Conservation is enclosed
      >in Appendix I.
      >3.3.4 Measure the water quality
      > Using simple water quality kits, the students will measure water
      >quality in the sea at selected locations along the beach.
      >3.3.5 Record human activities on the beach
      > The number of people using the beach and the type of activities
      >they are engaged in will be recorded.
      >3.3.6 Measure and record physical changes in the beach
      > At intervals along the beach, the physical changes in the beach
      >will be measured. This can be done by using a tape measure to record the
      >distance from a fixed object behind the beach (such as a wall or tree) to
      >the high water mark line. This would show the amount of erosion or
      >accretion from month to month. Alternatively beach profiles/cross sections
      >could be measured using the methodology developed by the COSALC project to
      >determine the amount of erosion or accretion. (The COSALC counterpart
      >agencies in the islands could assist with the training). These beach
      >change measurement points could be adjacent to the debris measurement sites.
      >3.3.7 Collect sand samples and record characteristics
      > At the locations where beach width is measured, beach material
      >will be recorded and samples of sand collected. With the use of a hand
      >lens, students will determine the type of sand, the size and angularity of
      >the sand grains. This will tell the students about the origin of the sand
      >and how long it has been on the beach.
      >3.3.8 Measure and record wave characteristics
      > Simple observations of wave height, wave period and wave direction
      >can be made from the beach. This would provide data on the processes
      >causing the beach to change (erode or accrete) and on the movement of
      >debris onto the beach or away from the beach.
      >3.3.9 Measure nearshore currents
      > Nearshore currents can be measured by placing some simple dye or a
      >small floating object in the sea near where the waves break. The distance
      >and direction the object moves over a period of one minute will be
      >measured. This will give information on the nearshore current, how sand
      >moves along the beach, and on the movement of marine debris along the beach.
      >3.3.10 Observe turtle nesting activity
      > If the beach is a turtle nesting beach, the position of any nests
      >or crawls will be recorded. If a nest is observed then future visits can
      >be timed to coincide with the hatching.
      >3.3.11 Record the animals and plants
      > Animals and plants observed on the beach will be recorded, e.g.
      >numbers of crabs, sea urchins, sand dollars, jellyfish, birds, algae,
      >seagrass etc. Record any obvious changes in the vegetation behind the
      >beach e.g. a recently fallen tree.
      >3.4 Classroom activities
      > After collecting the data for a period of 6-9 months, the data can
      >be compiled and analysed. Graphs, histograms, pie charts, statistics can
      >be prepared to show changes at the particular beach e.g.
      >· the relative importance of natural versus man-made debris;
      >· the type of man-made debris which was most prevalent;
      >· the distribution of debris on the beach and determining factors
      >such as patterns of beach use and waves and current action;
      >· changes in beach use over time;
      >· changes in the size of the beach (erosion and accretion);
      >· changes in beach material and the type and size of the sand grains;
      >· changes in wave patterns over time.
      >Using this information, the major problems at the particular beach will be
      >3.5 First regional workshop
      > During this meeting each country will present the results of the
      >first year’s data collection and discuss their proposed follow-up activities.
      >3.6 Implementation of beach management projects
      > During the next 12 month period, the groups will select one
      >particular problem at their beaches where they think that, together with
      >their communities, they can make a difference. Simple projects will be
      >initiated and implemented, with the help of local communities, some
      >examples are given below:
      >Awareness activities:
      >· giving presentations to the school and community;
      >· making a video;
      >· developing an exhibit about the beach for public display.
      >Revegetation projects:
      >· implementing a tree planting or beautification project;
      >· planting an eroded dune area with grasses..
      > Beach clean-up projects:
      >· carrying out a beach clean-up activity;
      >· providing garbage collection cans;
      >· making notices about littering.
      > Beach user projects:
      >· demarcating a buoyed swimming area where persons could bathe
      >without being worried about boats and jet-skis etc.
      >3.7 Project evaluation
      > Once the project has been implemented, further measurements can be
      >made to evaluate the success of the project.
      >3.8 Second regional workshop
      > During this meeting the schools will present the results of their
      >beach management activities.
      > The project will benefit the participating students by training
      >them in basic scientific observations and measurement, providing data which
      >can then be analysed using mathematical, computing and language
      >skills. The project will also provide training in scientific method and
      >the making of logical deductions. Furthermore this training will be placed
      >in the context of environmental management and sustainable development as
      >the students use the information in the implementation of projects to help
      >solve specific environmental problems. As the students involve their
      >parents and communities in their projects, environmental awareness will be
      >enhanced through action orientated activities.
      >Name of beach_________________________________________________________________
      >An easy way to keep track of the items is to make tick marks,
      >pieces/clumps seaweed/seagrass____________ sea fans/sea
      >bags__________________________________ rope________________________________
      >bottles________________________________ 6-pack holders________________________
      >cigarette filters__________________________ strapping
      >diapers________________________________ syringes_____________________________
      >fishing lines_____________________________ tampon
      >nets_____________________________ other_______________________________
      >buoys_________________________________ meat trays___________________________
      >cups__________________________________ packaging
      >egg cartons____________________________ plates_______________________________
      >fast food
      >containers______________________ other_______________________________
      >bottles________________________________ light bulbs___________________________
      >fluorescent light
      >bulbs____________________ pieces_______________________________
      >condoms_______________________________ tyres________________________________
      >caps_____________________________ wire________________________________
      >cans__________________________________ pieces_______________________________
      >bags__________________________________ pieces_______________________________
      >cardboard______________________________ plates_______________________________
      >trunks_________________________ other_______________________________

      Martin A. Keeley
      Education Director, Mangrove Action Project
      Gen. Delivery, Watering Place P.O.
      Cayman Brac
      Cayman Islands
      Tel: (345) 948-0319
      Fax: (345) 948-0640
      e-mail: mangrove@...
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