Day 1 :
University of Madras, India
Keynote: Tropical Climate Variability and its impacts on Marine Coastal Ecosystems and Biodiversity of Plankton, Southeast Coast of India
Time : 09:30-11:30
Dr. Nallamuthu Godhantaraman is Head i/c, Centre for Environmental studies, University of Madras and also Deputy Director, UGC-Human Resources Development Centre and Adjunct Faculty, Centre for Ocean and Coastal Studies, University of Madras, Chennai, India. He was a Visiting Fellow at the Department of Marine Science, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, India. He was a JSPS Post-doctoral Researcher at Hiroshima University, Japan and STA Post-doctoral Researcher at National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science & Technology (AIST), Japan during 1998-2002. He is a Senate Member - Middle East University, United Arab Emirates. He has published more than 25 research papers, participated and presented research papers at more than 40 national and 15 International conferences held in India and abroad. He has visited Japan, USA, UK, Germany, France, Portugal, Singapore, Malaysia, China, Thailand and South Korea. He has successfully completed a number of major research projects and also serving as a member in various professional bodies/committees. He got Distinguished Scientist Award 2015 in India for the contribution in the field of marine sciences and Awarded as an Ambassador by the Asian Council of Science Editors for the year 2016. Besides, serving as an Editorial Board Member for the Journal of Shipping and Ocean Engineering and also referee/reviewer for many scientific journals (over 15) published by Elsevier, Springer publishers, Indian Publishers, UK Publishers and Indonesian Journals.
Global warming and the subsequent events of climate variability may have greater repercussions for marine ecosystems than for terrestrial ecosystems, because temperature influences, water column stability, nutrient enrichment, biodiversity of plankton communities and its reproductive cycles. To understand the impacts of tropical climate variability on the marine coastal ecosystems, a study has been undertaken to investigate the biodiversity and abundance of plankton in the most important tropical estuarine systems, a unique coastal marine environment in South India, The cumulative long term survey showed (period from 1988 to 2015) remarkable variations in environmental parameters, chlorophyll a concentrations and diversity of species, abundance of plankton communities. Besides, it showed seasonal variations: - being highest in summer (April – June) and lowest in monsoon (October – December). There were wide temperature fluctuations (range: 22.8 – 33.9oC), salinity gradients (3.1 – 34.8) and chlorophyll a concentrations (1.6 – 19.4 µg l-l). The overall mean abundance of phytoplankton 3.9 fold and zooplankton 3.2 fold were higher in summer than in monsoon. The low diversity and abundance of plankton during monsoon might be due un-favorable climatological conditions, disappearance of many species, scarcity of food and high turbidity condition of the water column. The cumulative data on plankton diversity and abundance showed interesting observations on species distribution and abundance pattern. Climate variability exerts major influence on the ecosystem and biodiversity of plankton.