Puerto Rican oceanographer joins prestigious scientific society

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Amanda Pérez Pintado
Since 2006, Jorge Bauzá Ortega has worked in the San Juan Bay Estuary Program (Vanessa Serra Díaz).

Jorge Bauzá Ortega, scientific director of the San Juan Bay Estuary Program, is currently leading research on contaminants of emerging concern.

 

Oceanographer Jorge Bauzá Ortega's connection to the sea began at an early age. As a child, the scientific director of the San Juan Bay Estuary Program collected seashells and sponges, among other remains of marine species, and the sample grew so large that his mother created a designated space for him to preserve it.

"Everything I collected, I looked at it, I observed it," Bauzá Ortega recounted. "I already had that scientific spirit since I was a child creating collections."

The scientist confirmed that interest when he had the opportunity to work in a marine science laboratory during his high school studies at the Río Piedras Campus of the University of Puerto Rico (UPR).

"It was taking up again what motivated me as a child," he recalled. "That's why it's important that we expose our children to this, because we don't know if that's going to be key in their educational preparation."

Later, as a graduate student, Bauzá Ortega conducted research on ocean emissions of nitrous oxide and the production of greenhouse gases - those that accumulate in the atmosphere and retain heat, contributing to global warming - from mangrove sediments. Today, he works with the San Juan Bay Estuary Program with a mission to make science accessible to the general population.

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