Blue Humanities. Socio-environmental vulnerability in coastal and ocean ecosystems (Conference in English)

Speakers: Pr. Antonio ORTEGA SANTOS (Universidad de Granada, Spain)

Local contact: Pablo Corral Broto (Espace-Dev)

Date: Thursday, September 14, 2023 at 1pm

Place: Amphi Charpak

Seminar summary:

This presentation is part of the emerging field of Blue Humanities, which studies the processes of extractivism and modification of marine, oceanic and coastal systems. The field of environmental history studies these processes in a long cycle. To this end, we propose to work on two research laboratories in the peninsular and coastal systems of Europe and America.

The first is the Gulf of California, in Mexico. This is the only territorial sea in the world belonging to a single nation. It covers 49% of Mexico’s coastline and 50% of the country’s island territory. One of the five most productive and biodiverse marine ecosystems on the planet. Global species: 40% of marine mammals, 33% of cetaceans. 4,500 marine invertebrates, 181 birds, 695 plants (28 endemic). 14 ZNPs, a World Heritage Site since 2005. 21 Ramsar sites. 70% of national fish production.

The second is the south-east of the Iberian peninsula, whose dune systems have been subject to intensified sand extraction since the second half of the 20th century, under a dictatorial authoritarian system that imposed a culture of extraction, as was the case with Francoism in Spain. The dunes of Cabo de Gata, on the Mediterranean coast, have provided the sand needed for the expansion of plastic crops (greenhouses), which have transformed this landscape into a new material and energy frontier.