Feedback from the Tanzania mission
(HATARI 2017-2019 project continuation)
In 2017, our interdisciplinary team gathering researchers in geosciences, didactics, environment and geography benefited from a Tellus-RIFT funding (INSU) to study the impacts of geodynamic processes (volcanism and earthquakes) on two contrasting socio-ecosystems in North Tanzania (Lengai and Meru areas).
The HaTaRi (Hazard in Tanzanian Rift) project brings together the French universities of Montpellier, Brest, Franche-Comté, Lyon 1, and Tanzanian institutes in Arusha (Nelson Mandela African Institution of Sciences and Technology), Dodoma (University and Mines and Resources Institute), and Dar Es Salaam (School of geosciences). It started with joint field missions in 2017 and 2018, and then extended to an IRD project (TANZARISK) in 2019. And then Covid arrived, preventing us from continuing our progress…
It is thus to revitalize our project and to relaunch the collaborations with our partner institutions that we decided to return on the spot in April 2022. We were able to dialogue with our usual partners (NMAIST, Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Dodoma and Dar Es Salaam University), but also initiate a new collaboration with the Geological Survey of Tanzania (Dodoma).
MoUs (Memoranda of Understanding) are currently being prepared in order to perpetuate the collaborations and formalize the new objectives of future projects. Among others, we have identified several major axes of interest with important local stakes:
- Development of a permanent seismological network for Tanzania (5 stations currently)
- Studies of pollution sources and water resources
- Development of national Tanzanian geoparks and geosites
- Training sessions (for students and professionals).
In parallel to this academic mission, we were also able to verify some points of interest in the field:
- Geology: During our interview with the Ngorongoro Conservation Authority, we presented the results of petrophysical and geochemical analyses we had performed on salts from Lake Magadi (Ngorongoro crater), and on sand from the Shifting Sands (dune carried by local winds). We were able to return to the Shifting Sands site to measure some physical characteristics of the dune and its trace in order to better understand and constrain the phenomenon.
- Educational Sciences: the 1300 responses to a questionnaire dedicated to educational sciences in the field in 2017 allowed for some promising tracks to pursue. During this mission, we were able to return to 2 schools already surveyed, and subject the approximately 100-150 students in level 4 (15-16 years old) to a new questionnaire. The school directors and teachers kindly accepted to welcome us and take 1 hour of their time for the students to answer the questionnaire. The collected forms will be translated before being analyzed (often written in Swahili).