CEGA participates in Second Scientific Symposium in Lonquimay

Thursday, 13 de October

“What hides beneath the surface of Lonquimay volcano?”; “Science and Community” and ” Direct uses of geothermal energy in the area” were some of the topics discussed by researchers with the local community.

Between 29 and 30 September, took place the “Second Scientific Symposium in Lonquimay: Community Service Science for Sustainable Development”, activity that join researchers and residents together to discuss projects they are carried out in the area, and also to socialize the preliminary results of the scientific research with the community.

The initiative is the result of the collective work between the Tourism Association “Discover Lonquimay” and other institutions that develop research in the area, including the Andean Geothermal Center of Excellence (CEGA). Viviana Pedroza, CEGA`s postgraduate student and one of the coordinator of this meeting, says the idea came up after detecting that the community did not know anything about the potential of their territory, because there are no spaces to talk about the scientific work that takes place in the area. “It is important to be very clear with people, in order to avoid suspicion. It is our responsibility as researchers to communicate what we are doing and how it will impact them”.

Viviana adds that the spirit of each year “is to invite those who have done some work in the area, institutions around the country that can provide workshops or talks, because the idea is that these projects remain in the community”.

The second version of the Scientific Symposium in Lonquimay, stood out  for  its wide variety of exhibitions. Environmental Education, Climate and Glaciers, Native Fishes and Viticulture in the area, were some of the topics discussed during two days at the Cultural House of Lonquimay.

This year CEGA participated with the talks “Science and Community: democratizing scientific knowledge” and “Geothermal energy for society: Possible direct-uses of geothermal energy in Lonquimay and surroundings” by researchers Sofía Vargas and Mauricio Muñoz, respectively. In addition to this, there was another interesting talk named: ” What hides beneath the surface of Lonquimay volcano?”, presented by Maria Angelica Contreras, CEGA`s postgraduate student, and the Workshop: “Fossilization processes and sedimentary structures” aimed for children between 8 and 10 years, conducted by Viviana Pedroza.

This activity is part of the new challenges for the CEGA`s second period (2015-2020), and complements the actions to promote geothermal energy in the society: “What follows now is to create a direct use project in Lonquimay. Together with the German company GTN Latin America (GTN LA), we have prepared a proposal that includes different possibilities with geothermal energy: firewood dryer, greenhouse or space heating. At least one of these ideas will be concretized, for what we will request funding to The German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ)”, says Diego Morata, CEGA`s Director.