It is my pleasure to write this message, the first of 2014 as the new Chair of the Chagos Conservation Trust. The outgoing Chair, Alan Huckle did a fantastic job of steering us through the last two years and I hope that I do as well.
This year is already shaping up to be an exciting one. We have our annual scientific expedition leaving in March, which will build on the excellent research that has been carried out in the Chagos over recent years.
We also look forward to the Government’s new feasibility study of resettlement in Chagos. CCT will take a part in the consultation to ensure that conservation remains a high priority for the British Government, whatever their decision on resettlement.
Having first researched coral in the Chagos in the 1970s, almost 40 years ago, I remain as excited about this amazing part of the world as I did in 1975. Free from many stresses that oceans around the world have to cope with, it’s an environment that is teeming with life, colour and hope.
Our November conference celebrated the legacy of research in Chagos, as well as exciting current projects and prospects for science there in future. Our new film introducing CCT and the Chagos Archipelago premiered at the “Chagos 20/20” conference.
We hope you take a look and stay in touch with what’s happening in the Chagos Islands and it’s marine environment – described by one of the scientist’s from last year’s expedition as “a glimpse of the past”.
Professor Charles Sheppard, Chair, Chagos Conservation Trust