2020 Murcia, Spain

14th International Conference of the ISSLR – International Society of Salt Lake Research, Murcia, Spain, October 2020

The detailed information about the conference will be announced later. For details please contact Katia Hueso (salinasdeinterior@gmail.com)

LOCAL ORGANISING COMMITTEE – SECRETARIAT

  • Francisco Belmonte, University of Murcia
  • Katia Hueso, IPAISAL/Pontifical University Madrid
  • Jesús-F. Carrasco, IPAISAL
  • José Manuel Vidal, Biocyma

LOCAL SCIENTIFIC COMMITTEE

  • Gregorio Romero, University of Murcia & Regional Government of Murcia
  • Francisco Belmonte, Dept. Geography, University of Murcia
  • Gustavo Ballesteros, Dept. Geography, University of Murcia
  • Francisco Robledano, Dept. of Ecology and Hydrology, University of Murcia
  • Andrés Millán, Dept. of Ecology and Hydrology, University of Murcia
  • Pepa Velasco, Dept. of Ecology and Hydrology, University of Murcia
  • Mª Ángeles Alonso Vargas, CIBIO (Institute of Biodiversity), University of Alicante
  • Rosa Mª Martínez Espinosa, Dept. of Agrochemistry and Biochemistry, University of Alicante
  • Mª del Carmen Rodríguez, Dept. of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Alicante
  • Miguel Ángel Núñez, Association La Carraca / Manager of the Salinas of Rambla Salada

PLACE: MURCIA (SE SPAIN)

The reason for choosing Murcia is that it is an extraordinarily rich region in inland saltscapes. It has more than a dozen inland saline environments: salt mines, hypersaline streams and, of course, it is the home to the hypersaline Mar Menor lagoon, and very close of the La Mata and Torrevieja littoral saltpans, in the nearby province of Alicante. The problems that the Mar Menor are currently suffering (eutrophication, pollution, sedimentation) will undoubtedly be of great interest to the specialized public that is expected to attend to the conference, possibly including a special session on this topic. Furthermore, the Mar Menor lagoon has several active saltpans across the border.

From the point of view of connections, both Alicante and Murcia have good highway and railroad links with the rest of Spain and Europe. The Alicante International Airport lies at just 70 km. Soon (in 2019-2020), Murcia will be served by a new international airport at 25 km of the city centre and high-speed railroad that will connect the city to Madrid in just 2.5 hours. Murcia has over 443,000 inhabitants, being the largest city in the southeast of Spain, one of the most important tourist regions of the country.

It has all the services needed in a mid-sized town, while being walkable, with a lively centre and plenty of places to enjoy a good meal or a drink in good company. Beaches are a short ride away from the city centre. Murcian gastronomy is rich and diverse, based among others on salted fish and orchard products and the historical presence of arabs, jews and Christians in the region. It is one of the best exponents of the Mediterranean diet, which has been recognized by UNESCO as Intangible Cultural Heritage.

The landscape of the area is characterized by the presence of fruit and vegetable orchards. Further inland, the typical features are irrigated crops, mountain ranges with pine groves and ancient neogenic basins, with strongly eroded loamy lithologies, forming typical badland landscapes. These have been modelled by runoff that increase the high saline concentrations of lower lying terrains, resulting in saline streams -also known as “ramblas”- and wetlands, which feed the inland salinas. Other salinas worth mentioning are those located around the largest saline lagoon in the Mediterranean: The Mar Menor.

The climate is hot semi-arid, with an average temperature in the warm months (July and August) above 25°C and maximum temperatures of 40°C or higher. Murcia has the second highest maximum temperature record registered in Spain, with 47.3°C. But it also enjoys the mildest temperatures in spring and autumn, with average temperatures of 20-25°C in these seasons. Sunshine is guaranteed almost year-round; it is said that Murcia is where the Sun lives.

ACCOMMODATION Hotels in downtown Murcia. Discounts will be offered to participants in different hotels that already have agreements with the University of Murcia.

VENUE Paranymph building of the Campus de La Merced of the University of Murcia, in the heart of the city

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE English, with possible translation from Spanish to English in opening session.

PROPOSAL POST-CONFERENCE TOURS

A. National Park Cabo de Gata with its coastal salinas, Tabernas beaches, former gold mining district of Rodalquilar and visit to the saline Fuentedepiedra lagoon and the salinas of La Malá. Cultural visits to the cave dwellings of Guadix, Granada with the famous Alhambra. Transfer to Alicante or Murcia.

B. Inland saline wetlands of Villena, balsas de Elda, el estrecho de la Salineta, El Pinoso, Petrola lagoon, salinas of Pinilla, stay at the historical town of Villena, visit to wineries and the Elche palm forest World Heritage Site. Optional transfers to Madrid, Alicante or Murcia.

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