Com­pa­ring es­tu­a­ries in Knys­na and C­hi­na

Knysna-Plett Herald - - News | Nuus - Ya­seen Gaf­far

A de­le­ga­ti­on of C­hi­ne­se pro­fes­sors and stu­dents ha­ve part­ne­red up with UCT’s pro­fes­sor Mi­ke Me­adows and stu­dents to gat­her and col­lect in­for­ma­ti­on from the Knys­na es­tu­a­ry in a com­pa­ra­ti­ve stu­dy with the Yangt­ze es­tu­a­ry, which is one of the wor­ld’s lar­ge­st al­lu­vi­al es­tu­a­ries, ad­ja­cent to the most de­ve­lo­ped e­co­no­mic zo­ne in C­hi­na.

The C­hi­ne­se de­le­ga­ti­on hails from East C­hi­na Nor­mal U­ni­ver­si­ty and the South A­fri­can group is from the UCT de­part­ment of en­vi­ron­men­tal and ge­o­graphi­cal s­cien­ce.

The group of 22 pe­op­le ar­ri­ved in Knys­na on 30 March and im­me­di­a­te­ly set up so­phi­sti­ca­ted e­quip­ment to me­a­su­re and col­lect sam­ples of the se­di­ment al­ong the es­tu­a­ry du­ring high and low ti­des, in­clu­ding e­quip­ment to col­lect da­ta re­la­ting to nu­me­rous ot­her e­le­ments al­so being stu­died. Me­adows, who is al­so the se­cre­ta­ry ge­ne­ral of the In­ter­na­ti­o­nal Ge­o­graphi­cal U­ni­on, said the pro­ject was ap­pro­ved fol­lo­wing a joint call for pro­po­sals from the Na­ti­o­nal Re­se­arch Foun­da­ti­on of South A­fri­ca and the C­hi­na De­ve­lop­ment Re­se­arch Foun­da­ti­on.

He was spea­king to the Knys­na-P­lett He­rald on the si­de­li­nes of their acti­vi­ties at T­he­sen Is­land on Tu­es­day 3 A­pril, and said the pro­ject has star­ted in Knys­na and will run o­ver a pe­ri­od of three y­e­ars.

“It’s a com­pa­ra­ti­ve stu­dy of the hyd­ro­se­di­ment dy­n­a­mi­cs of a cri­ti­cal zo­ne within vul­ne­ra­ble en­vi­ron­ments. We are look­ing at how the en­vi­ron­ment is re­spon­ding to hu­man im­pact, the sur­fa­ce, se­di­ment, tem­pe­ra­tu­re of the wa­ter and depth, he­a­vy me­tals pol­lu­ti­on and storm­wa­ter ru­noff,” he said.

The group spent their last day col­lecting sam­ples on 3 A­pril and in the co­ming mont­hs will con­ti­nue the pro­ject in C­hi­na at the Yangt­ze es­tu­a­ry be­fo­re re­tur­ning to Knys­na in Sep­tem­ber t­his y­e­ar.

P­ho­to: Ya­seen Gaf­far

The te­am of lo­cal and in­ter­na­ti­o­nal pro­fes­sors and stu­dents who are stu­dying the hu­man im­pact at the Knys­na es­tu­a­ry in a com­pa­ra­ti­ve stu­dy with the Yangt­ze es­tu­a­ry in C­hi­na.

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