This week the Ambassadors, permanent representatives at the International Organizations with headquarters in Vienna, of Spain, Esther Monterrubio, and of Paraguay, Juan Francisco Facetti, were shown the installations of the IAC. During their stay they visited some of the scientific infrastructures of the Canary Islands Observatories (OCAN) and showed interest in the projects being developed there.
Among the various duties of these two permanent Ambassadors is that of representing their countries in the United Nations Commission on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) and its two Subcommissions, the Subcommission on Legal Affairs (SAJ) and the Subcommission on Scientific and Technical Affairs (SACT). Ambassador Facetti is the president of the latter.
During their visit on Monday 24 October to the headquarters of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) in La Laguna, guided by the Deputy Director of the IAC, Casiana Muñoz Tuñón, they were also accompanied by the Vice-Rector of Projection, Internationalisation and Cooperation of the University of La Laguna (ULL), Lidia Cabrera Pérez; and by the General Director of Fight against Climate Change and Environment of the ULL, José Domingo Fernández Herrera. On Tuesday 25th, Professor Facetti gave a talk at the IAC and, on Thursday 27th, he shared the work carried out by COPUOS Subcommittee on Scientific and Technical Affairs at the 5th International Meeting of the Starlight Foundation in La Palma. Before his speech, the Deputy Director of the IAC presented the problems derived from satellite mega-constellations for observing the sky.
Spain cooperates closely with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) in a variety of areas, but in recent years this collaboration has been particularly active regarding the protection of dark and quiet skies. In 2021, UNOOSA, the Government of Spain and the IAC organised the Dark & Quiet Skies for Science and Society workshop and, in 2022, a seminar of the same name, which resulted in a report with recommendations to address the problem of light pollution, radio pollution and satellite constellations (link). Both events have been instrumental in raising awareness about the negative effects that various human activities have on space observation. In 2023, the COPUOS Scientific and Technical Subcommittee will address this issue in a comprehensive manner.
The Japanese ambassador to Spain, Kenji Kiramatsu, yesterday visited the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) and the Canary Island Observatories, together with Masahiro Aoki, secretary to the Embassy, Yoshihiro Miwa, the consul of Japan in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, and Josep Piqué Camps, President of the Council of the Spain Japan Foundation. Yesterday, they were received by Rafael Rebolo López, the Director of the IAC and Jesús Burgos, administrator of the General Services of the IAC at its headquarters in La Laguna. After a short visit, the delegation went up to the Teide
João Mira-Gomes, Portuguese Ambassador to Spain, visited the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) headquarters in La Laguna this morning, together with Vicente M. Álvarez Gil, Portuguese Consul in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, and several members of his team, accompanied by Rafael Rebolo, Director of the IAC, and Mahmoudreza Oshagh, senior postdoctoral researcher. During their tour of the facilities, they were informed about the different projects that are being developed in the framework of the Portuguese-Spanish collaboration. The IAC participates in several consortiums and scientific
The French Ambassador to Spain, Yves Saint-Geours, visited the Headquarters of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) yesterday morning, and in the afternoon he visited the Teide Observatory, Izaña (Tenerife) accompanied by the Consul, Francisco de Esteban García, in order to learn about the programmes of scientific collaboration in which France and the IAC are jointly involved.During his visit to the Institute, the Ambassador was accompanied by the Director of the IAC, Rafael Rebolo, and was told about the projects of research and technical development in which France is