Professor Mário Ruivo, who was Doctor Honoris Causa by the University of Algarve (UAlg), died today, January 25, aged 89.
Following this news, the University of Algarve decreed three days of academic mourning.
António Branco, dean of UAlg, expresses “publicly the deepest regrets for the passing of Mário Ruivo”, addressing “to his family and friends the most sincere and heartfelt condolences”.
Mário Ruivo was a “pioneer in ocean defense”. At the delivery ceremony of the honorary cause, this professor acknowledged that «the University of the Algarve has been particularly active in the reflection and mobilization of the scientific community of the sea» and that «it has contributed to a factual analysis of the situation and outlined elements for a strategy that meets the requirements».
At the same ceremony, he said that the attribution of this academic title was due to his “long navigation, real and conceptual, through the seas and the ocean, which must now be provided for conditions so that new and future generations can deepen it”.
Ana Paulo Vitorino, Minister of the Sea, has also already reacted to the death of Mário Ruivo, thanking him for his «active support in the development of innovative strategies for the Portuguese Sea».
The oceanographer's funeral ceremonies will take place from 17:00 today, 25 January, at Gare Marítima de Alcântara, in Lisbon, where the body will be in a burning chamber. Tomorrow, the 26th, at 15 pm, the funeral will leave this Gare for the Cemitério dos Prazeres.
Mário Ruivo, who was born in 1927, is recognized as one of the fathers of the new Ocean regime and its integration into the goals of sustainable development. He was dedicated to research, teaching, promoting cooperation in matters of the sea and sensitizing governments and public opinion to responsible governance of the ocean.
Biologist by training at the University of Lisbon since 1950, he specialized in Biological Oceanography and Management of Living Marine Resources at the University of Paris – Sorbonne, Laboratoire Arago (1951-54). He was also a Doctor Honoris Causa by the University of the Azores.
He held leading positions in the United Nations system, such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, from 1961 to 1974, and in the UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, of which he was secretary from 1980 to 1989. He was also Scientific Advisor at EXPO'98 and member/coordinator of the Independent World Commission for the Oceans.
He participated in the process concerning the establishment, in Lisbon, of the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), in 2002, and was the promoter and president of the European Center for Information on Marine Science and Technology, from 2002 to 2008. He was a representative of the Foundation for Science and Technology in the European Marine Board.
He was awarded national and foreign honorary orders and other distinctions and prizes, and is finally the author of several publications on Oceanography and Governance and Cooperation in Ocean Affairs.