I stopped flying altogether 10 years ago, after the birth of my first child. His birth induced a very strong sense of connection with the future, and I strongly felt I had the moral obligation to stop flying.
My conviction has grown over the years, but only in the last year or so I started speaking out about it, in the hope that more colleagues would take up their responsibility. The fact that I chose not to fly to interesting conferences in the Americas or in Asia gave me the feeling of missing out on some things. From a career perspective I miss the opportunity of meeting some important researchers in the field; on a personal level I regret that I miss the opportunity to get to know a more global, culturally diverse research community.
However, I have enjoyed traveling by train to many workshops and conferences, and to pay visits to colleagues all over Europe. A good and comfortable train ride often gives me a couple hours of concentrated time for preparation or other work.
I work on sediment dynamics and biogeochemistry of estuarine and coastal systems, with a keen interest in the Belgian Scheldt estuary. I am mostly doing data analysis and numerical modelling, but also some fieldwork. I’m involved with Scientists4Climate in Belgium.