Oasis of life

 By Abo (

The goal: to protect marine biodiversity while providing a place for marine life enthusiasts and scientists to learn and study. The project, Poseidon, will involve transforming the mining areas of disused offshore platforms in the Adriatic into a science park. Created by Eni in collaboration with the CNR [Italian National Research Council], ISMAR (Institute of Marine Sciences) and the Fondazione Cetacea [Cetacea Foundation],  Poseidon has already seen the transformation of several platforms into small islands. Its ambitions can be gathered from its name, which evokes the mythological figure of the great Greek god of the sea. Evita Comes and Alessandra Mina went to see how will work…

Poseidon will be the first marine park project in Europe to reuse, for scientific and public purposes, disused offshore structures; the first in terms of high technological content, location and widespread reception and transmission of marine environmental data.

The Adriatic is perceived in the popular imagination as a “great lake” or worse, a “dead sea.”. In reality, this sea, with its purely sandy seabed, hosts a broad and diverse variety of species, a population that finds its ideal habitat in the submerged part of the platform. It seems incredible, but under the offshore plants, over the years, a true oasis has been created for the repopulation of marine wildlife and the protection of biodiversity. This phenomenon is already known to the world of science and research, especially to American researchers, who have produced authoritative studies on this subject.

Jeremy Claisse and research team from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a team from Occidental College have gone si far as declaring that the marine population settled around the depths of platforms along the Californian coast far exceeds the number of animal species that inhabit the natural coastal areas.

Returning to the Mare Nostrum, Poseidon is divided into three interrelated sub-projects: EFOS, EBI and CTC, dedicated respectively to signal transmission, to the monitoring of marine flora passing through sonar systems, and to the collection and study of signals sent from animals carrying two-way transmitters.


Take a look at Poseidon project’s infographic

The first phase of Poseidon, involving the sighting of marine species moving through the area is already underway, while the marine park project is reaching the final phases of planning.

Meanwhile, in the waters of the Adriatic, the first platforms have already begun to be transformed into small islands, located only 16 Km away from the coast in the section of the sea between Rimini and Bellaria, just offshore from traditional holiday beaches frequented by international tourists as well as Italians. The new marine park could become a favorite destination for underwater enthusiasts, particularly those  who care about the protection of marine flora and fauna. The site will certainly be of interest by anyone looking for an opportunity to experience a new relationship with the sea in an unexplored environment.

The park’s research activities will seek to prevent the extinction of protected species, but Poseidon’s main role is to preserve and protect the “home” chosen by these animals, providing an oasis in this most unexpected place.

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Abo (
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