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Women’s Science Fellowship Dedicated To Waterway Restoration And Climate Action

NZ one of the first to benefit from climate-specific L’Oréal fellowship

A Kiwi marine environmental scientist has been awarded a global fellowship to further research how restoring New Zealand’s waterways could combat climate change.

Dr. Shari Gallop, from the University of Waikato, has been awarded the 2020 L’Oréal/UNESCO For Women in Science fellowship. This programme recognises the achievements of exceptional early-career female scientists. For the first time this year, in New Zealand and Australia, the programme is dedicated to scientists investigating solutions to climate change.

Dr. Gallop will be awarded $25,000 to support her ground-breaking studies into how estuaries, which support food supply and local economies across the country, can be successfully restored – accounting for the impacts of climate change.

“Estuaries provide an important resource for communities. But many have been degraded due to poor decisions and management and are vulnerable to climate change because they are exposed to the changes of land, river and marine environments. The ultimate goal is to successfully restore estuaries, to restore the environment for the people,” says Dr Gallop.

Cities and towns across New Zealand are built around estuaries, including Auckland and Christchurch, and many are considered Taonga. They can absorb carbon, provide storm protection, support the aquaculture industry, and connect with deeply embedded cultural values.

Dr. Gallop was selected by an independent panel of science and research representatives to receive L’Oréal’s For Women in Science fellowship. The programme has been running for 22 years to promote and highlight the importance of, and ensure, greater participation of women in science. Dr Gallop joins four Australian-based fellows to be named this year, all working towards finding solutions to combat climate-change.

L’Oréal New Zealand’s Country Manager, Aurelie de Cremiers, says: “Now more than ever, in the middle of a global pandemic, we’re seeing how science and research is vital in solving the greatest challenges we face. We have a responsibility - as a company - towards helping find solutions to global issues, such as climate change. We need to act urgently, and that’s why we’ve chosen to dedicate our For Women in Science fellowship to scientists helping address this.

“Dr Gallop’s work is answering important questions about such a significant issue for New Zealand communities - healthy waterways - while helping contribute to global climate action. We are proud to be able to award the 2020 L’Oréal/UNESCO For Women in Science fellowship to Dr Gallop.”

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