• During the 47th and 50th Meeting of the Board on 23/11/2008 and 7/2/2009 respectively, it was decided and announced that there would be a student award to commemorate the deceased Foundation Board member, the late Notis Botsaris. The topic of the assignment that would have to be developed in approximately 1,000 words would have to be related to environmental problems observed by students in their own area. For example, Soil Pollution, Waste Management, Biodiversity Decrease, Harnessing Wind Energy or any other topic pertaining to the environment that had been observed by the students. After the Evaluation Committee reviewed the assignments sent by the Lyceums, the results were evaluated during the 54th Board Meeting on May 25, 2009. The award ceremony was held in the “Kostis Palamas” Cultural Centre of Athens University on Saturday, 20th June, 2009 and it was attended by students, their parents and their Lyceum Heads.

The Chairmanof the Foundation awarding 1st Prize to student Lalopoulos Evangelos and the Head of the 2nd Lyceum of Nafpaktos (Athens, 2009).

A commemorative photo of the Foundation Board members, the award-winning students and the Nafpaktos Lyceum Heads, at the end of the event (Athens, 2009).

  • Τhe Greek GEO Office, in collaboration with the International GEO Office, the Mariolopoulos-Kanaginis Foundation for the Environmental Sciences and the National Athens Observatory, organized an exceptionally important Symposium aimed to explore the cooperation potential among countries of South-Eastern Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean. For this purpose, named invitations were extended to two representatives from each country, a scientist directing a National Centre of Environmental Research and a politician at the level of Ministry Director-General, so that they could present the situation in their countries as it regards to the topic of Earth Observation and discuss the possibility of a more general and more permanent collaboration on this issue. The symposium lasted three days, June 8-10, 2009, in the central building of Athens University and in the “Kostis Palamas” building. Eleven (11) countries participated in it: Bulgaria, Croatia, Romania, Hungary, Moldova, Slovenia, Cyprus, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, and of course Greece. At the same time, the General Secretariat of the GEO International Office, headed by the Director General of the Office, Professor Jose Achaché and representatives of the European Organizations ESA, GMES, EOE and EU. (Proceedings of the GEO South – Eastern Europe and Eastern Mediterranean Symposium on “Earth Observation Services for Monitoring the Environment and Protecting the General Public”, 2009) http://www.greekgeo.noa.gr/wp/greek-geo-officeactivities/127-2/

The representatives from the eleven countries of South-Eastern Europe and Eastern Mediterranean, who participated in the Athens work meeting within the GEO framework, June 8-10, 2009.

From the left, the Director-General of the GEO Secretariat Professor Jose Achache, the Chairman of the National Athens Observatory and national GEO representative, Professor and Academician Mr. C. Zerefos and the Head of the Greek GEO Office, Mr. Vasileios Tritakis.

  • Within the framework of the celebration for the UNESCO International Year for Planet Earth, there was held with great success the Geo-Meetings Festival («Rencontres de la Terre») which laid the foundations for annual meetings in the following years, where there are discussions over the relationships of Man with our Planet. In 2009, the program aimed at raising the Greek public’s awareness of the problems arising in the special fields of environmental sciences. Lectures for the general public, scientific documentaries, a photo exhibition by Yann-Arthus Bertrand, a children’s book exhibition and meetings gave children and citizens the opportunity to come closer to the environment and see the world from above. The Festival opening took place on the premises of the National Athens Observatory in Theseio, with lectures by Mr. Christos Zerefos, Academician and Chairman of the NAO and MKF, by Mr. Jean Dercourt, Academician and Secretary of the French Academy as well as by the French Ambassador in Athens, Mr. Christophe Farnaud. The event was framed by extracts from Sophocles’ Antigone read by actors, musical interventions and the opening of a sculpture exhibition to commemorate the sculptor Demetrios Armakolas titled “Art meets Nature”. The sculptures on display had been designed by the artist when he was still alive, especially for the events of the International Year for Planet Earth.

Dr. Sylvie Gruszow, Mr. Jean Dercourt, Permanent Secretary of the French Academy of Sciences, the MKF Chairman Mr. Ch. Zerefos, Mrs. Ekaterini Suard, Adviser on Scientific and Cultural Co-operation and Director of the French Institute, Mrs. Dercourt, Mr. Nour-Dine Amlaiky Attaché of University and Scientific Cooperation, and the director of MKF Mrs. Xirotiri (Nymph Hill, 2009).

A panoramic view of the festival opening (Nymph Hill, 2009).

A commemorative photo at the exhibition entrance in front of the sculpture “from heaven” by the late sculptor Demetrios Armakolas. Standing from the left are Mrs. Ekaterini Suard Adviser on Scientific and Cultural Co-operation and Director of the French Institute, the French Ambassador Mr.Christophe Farnaud, the MKF Chairman Mr. C. Zerefos, Mrs. Dercourt, Mr. Jean Dercourt, Permanent Secretary of the French Academy of Sciences and Mrs. Christine Armakola (NAO Gardens, Nymph Hill, 2009).

  • The Mariolopoulos-Kanaginis Foundation for the Environmental Sciences (MKF) is the only Greek foundation that participated in the ERA-Net CIRCLE (Climate Impact Research Coordination for a Larger Europe). On the CIRCLE Board served the MKF member, Mr. Vasileios Tritakis, who followed the ERA-Net issues. In January 2009, it was the Foundation’s turn to organize the regular Board summit, which takes place every three months at the seat of a CIRCLE member. The meeting was held by the MKF at the “Kostis Palamas” University Hall and it was very successful. During the two-day meeting, there was a discussion over current ERA-Net CIRCLE issues, the most important of which was the preparation for the report of CIRCLE 1, which was completed in the autumn of 2009 and the preparation of the CIRCLE 2 proposal for the continuation of the program for another four years. Finally, it was decided that a new collaboration among members would be prepared regarding the effects of climate change on mountainous regions. Afterwards, the Foundation was represented by Mr. V. Tritakis at the meetings of the ERA-NET CIRCLE group in Bologna, February 24-28, 2009 and in Vienna, May 4-8 and September 9-11, 2009.
  • The Foundation supported the International Conference that was held in Athens on the 2nd and 3rd of June, 2009 on “Climate Change as a Challenge for Future Generations”. The Conference was held under the auspices of UNESCO and was organized on the initiative of the UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador and President of the Foundation for the Child and the Family, Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis and of the Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, honored with the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize and General Manager of ‘’The Energy and Resources Institute’’ [TERI] Dr. Rajendra Pachauri, in collaboration with the World Sustainable Development Forum. The Conference was attended and addressed by the UNESCO Director-General Mr. Koichiro Matsuura, Prime Minister Mr. Kostas Karamanlis, the President of the Opposition Party Mr. George Papandreou, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Mrs. Dora Bakoyannis, the Minister of Development Mr. Kostis Chatzidakis, the Minister of Healthcare Mr. Demetrios Avramopoulos, the Minister of National Education and Religious Affairs Mr. Aris Spiliotopoulos and other officials. Among the Conference speakers were Nobel Prize winners, academicians, scientists, politicians, experts and representatives of governmental and non-governmental organizations from Greece and abroad. The results of the Conference were summarized in the “Athens Declaration” and were published in a special edition (“Climate Change and Challenges for the Future Generations” Livanis Publications, 2009) http://www.mvvfoundation.gr/el/2-3-2009/

Prime Minister Kostas Karamanlis, Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyiannis, Dr. Rajendra Pachauri and Mr. C. Zerefos (Athens, 2009).