The South African Environmental Observation Network (SAEON) is a research facility that establishes and maintains nodes (environmental observatories, field stations or sites) linked by an information management network to serve as research and education platforms for long-term studies of ecosystems that will provide for incremental advances in our understanding of ecosystems and our ability to detect, predict and react to environmental change. The core research programme will strive to distinguish between anthropogenic and natural change as well as to unravel the relations between social change and ecosystem change.
One of the primary features of the Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) approach is that it overcomes the deficiencies associated with postgraduate research projects. Typically those cannot interpret the ever-present temporal and spatial environmental variability because of the pressure to produce a thesis within two to three years. SAEON will bring better cohesion between research programmes nationally and internationally and will ensure that LTER data is archived and accessible as a national asset for generations to come.
SAEON links existing and new environmental research and monitoring programmes. This is achieved through its research and monitoring platforms and programmes.
Visit SAEON at www.saeon.ac.za