The 6th International Symposium on Conservation and Management of Tropical Lakes, was jointly and virtually held with the 3rd International Conference on Tropical Limnology (TROPLIMNO III) from 25th -26th November 2021. The main theme was “Environmental Conservation Platform for Tropical Inland Waters: Science, Policy, and Impact”.
The joint event was hosted and organized by the Platform for Aquatic Ecosystem Research, co organized with the Southeast Asian Limnological Network (SEALNet), Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC), Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech), Research Center for Limnology – National Research and Innovation Agency of Indonesia (RCL-BRIN). Together, the event was collaborated with Ministry of Environment, Cambodia, Tonle Sap Authority, Cambodia, Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology, Cambodia, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Malaysia, and International Lake Environment Committee Foundation (ILEC), Japan. The event was financially supported by JICA and JST through the Science and Technology Research Partnership for Sustainable Development (SATREPS) project entitled “Establishment of Environmental Conservation Platform for Tonle Sap Lake, Cambodia” together with some sponsors from IRD through WatHealth and 4C project, Campus France and IFC, and Shimadzu.
The main objective of this event was to bring together leading academics and scientists, policy makers, lake managers, students and other professionals in the field of tropical limnology to exchange information, share knowledge and their experience and lessons learned in integrated lake basin management. As a joint activity, the organizers aimed to expand and sustain the Platform for Aquatic Ecosystem Research in the tropical lakes of Southeast Asia, which is an outcome of the SATREPS Project in Tonle Sap Lake.
There were more than 100 participants coming from various institutions and countries such as Cambodia, The Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan, France, etc. Forty-eight of presentations were presented by students, researchers, professors, and many researchers coming from various institutions.
Interestingly, the event had the privilege the presence of two keynote speakers, 1) Prof. Walter Rast, Chairperson of the ILEC Scientific Committee presented on “Mainstreaming of Lakes and Wetlands Into the Global Water Agenda and Sustainable Development Goal”. He addressed that to ensure the sufficient and clean water for global is important and to do that the political will to do it right, the capacity to do it, and the resource to do it now. Nevertheless, 2) Prof. Chihiro Yoshimura, professor from Tokyo Tech, presented on the “Tropical Limnology: Is it a frontier”. He suggested that there were some knowledge gaps on understanding of tropical lake, and it is important to understand this gap in order to effectively conserve and manage the lakes in a sustainable way. There were also plenary speakers included Prof. Hideto Fujii, presented more on the technical aspect of ADCP survey and RADASAT in the floodplain. Last but not least, Ms. Adelina Santos-Borja presented on “Building Synergy Among the Lakes of Southeast Asia”. She shared the experience of SEALNet formation and addressed her team imitative on the ASEAN Water Quality Criteria for Inland Waters, as well as a call to action to communities, and relevant stakeholder to build synergy, and work together toward the sustainable management of tropical lakes.
Besides that, there were 6 parallel sessions covering 4 different topics included 1) Ecosystem and Biodiversity of Tropical Inland Water; 2) Ecohydrology, Biochemical and Physical Processes in Tropical Aquatic Ecosystems; 3) Data Mining, Knowledge Management, Decision Support System for ILBM, Including Remote Sensing, GIS, and Related Tools; 4) Information Sharing and Stakeholder’s Engagement, Social Impact Assessment, and Nature-Based Solutions (Nbs).
The event was finished successfully with video/photo winner contestant announcement together with six best student presentations award. The event also brought multiple lake management stakeholders from Japan and other countries to discuss on the above topics, to provide science-based evidence, to address the challenges in the integrated lake basin managements as well as to urge all relevant stakeholders to work together, and to translate the research finding into a simple message that can be communicated in the communities, so that the effective measure can be done effectively to mitigate pollution and protect ecosystem and thus protect human health. animal, and environment.
(Dr. Peng Chanthol – ITC, Cambodia)