The TREC (Traversing European Coastlines) Expedition comes to Galway!

Tara Europa Lab

From the 2nd to the 14th of September, BlueRemediomics partners Tara Oceans and EMBL will make a major port-call in Galway, Ireland, as part of the TREC expedition (TRaversing European Coastlines).

The Galway port-call is one of 46 coastal regions spanning from the Mediterranean to Scandinavian countries, where the TREC expedition will sample over the next two years studying life at all scales, from viruses to animals, along the entire European coast. This ambitious undertaking unites over 150 research teams from more than 70 institutions across 29 European countries, with the overarching goal of significantly enhancing our knowledge of how these ecosystems respond to both natural and human-induced challenges. 

The expedition merges ocean exploration carried out by BlueRemediomics partner Tara Oceans with simultaneous collection of soil, sediment, shallow water, and specific model organisms in diverse environments. This effort is bolstered by EMBL’s mobile land-based facilities and collaboration with local marine research institutions. During TREC’s stopover in Galway, the EMBL mobile lab will be based at the Marine Institute in Rinville for daily coastal sampling, and the Tara Ocean Schooner will undertake offshore sampling at the same time.

The new knowledge on coastal ecology gathered during the expedition, will serve as a benchmark for forthcoming assessments and evaluations, allowing us to gauge the effects of climate change on coastal areas. To this end, it will help provide our societies, governments and regulators with the ability to better predict the possible effects of pollution and climate change. 

Public Engagement Activities:

In conjunction with the scientific expedition, TREC is hosting a series of complimentary public engagement gatherings in Galway. These events aim to foster community interest in marine science and molecular biology, with many being suitable for families to attend:

  • Tara Vessel Tours: 10th September; 10am — 6pm; Galway Docks 
  • Science on Tour: 8th September; 6pm — 8pm; Taylor’s Bar & Beer Garden; Interactive science talks with our scientists
  • TREC in the City Travelling Exhibition: 9th — 13th September; multiple locations
  • Nexus Island Augmented Reality Game-based Workshop: 9th — 13th September; multiple locations
  • Public Workshops: 9th — 13th September; Galway City Museum and more locations
  1. Plastic at sea, the solutions are on land
  2. Observing the invisible inhabitants of the Ocean
  3. Art & Science: the emotion of discovery       
  4. The Ocean, key to life on Earth

Local schools are also invited to register for group visits of the Tara Schooner. Limited sessions are available between 11-14 September. 

How does this link in with BlueRemediomics?

As one of the aspects of the BlueRemediomics project, the relationship between marine microbiome and ocean health will be further explored, addressing key ecosystem services enabled by marine microbes. The aim is to promote healthy microbiome approaches and establish a new metric for assessing ocean health using datasets from the TREC project.

Visit the link below for more information on the stopover!