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Conference report: American Geophysical Union (AGU)

The American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall Meeting is the largest worldwide conference in geophysical sciences, earth and space sciences. Fall Meeting sessions were held at the Moscone Convention Center in San Francisco, U.S. from the 12 to 16th December 2016. These meetings bring together the entire Earth and space science community from across the globe for discussions on emerging trends and latest research.

The Conference was the occasion to present the results of our study conducted from 2014 to 2016 in Cameroon and share our methods and results to a various and diverse audience interested about the topic. The objectives of this study were first to quantify Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions from typical land use on the margins of the Congo forests. Secondly, to analyze seasonal variability and environmental controls of soil-atmosphere GHG fluxes across a land use gradient and thirdly, to explore options of sustainable intensification of maize cultivation.

Our oral presentation titled Soil-Atmosphere Greenhouse Gas Fluxes on the Margins of the Congo Forest: Effects of Forest Conversion towards Smallholder Agricultural Lands and Agricultural Intensification, was held on 12th of December 2016.

We also had the possibility after the presentation to further discuss our results with colleagues and other people working on the same topic in Europe, USA and Asia.

The AGU Fall Meeting was also the occasion to Discover New and Cutting-Edge Research in order to gain insights about the latest science, most of which has not yet been published, and enhance our knowledge beyond our scientific field of interest. It was also a good occasion to network with our peers, connect with colleagues from diverse disciplines and to discuss the cutting-edge science presented, apart from the focus group events, and daily networking breaks.

I also had the possibility to meet and speak to exhibitors and sponsors and the industry representatives in the Exhibit Hall. It was the perfect opportunity to meet representatives of companies and organizations (NASA, GOOGLE, LI-COR Biosciences, ESRI, SERCON, ISOTOPX, several universities and institutes etc.), to test new devices and sensors measuring precipitation, temperature, greenhouse gases, wind, etc.

It was our first big conference and overall we had the opportunity to learn a lot especially about new methods used, explore ongoing research in different parts of the world, create new contacts and improve our communication skills.

Author: Steve Kwatcho

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