Minister Creed today attended the international Our Ocean Conference in Nusa Dua, Bali. This is the fifth of these conferences, started by former US Secretary of State, John Kerry, which brings together global community representatives and urges them to commit to tangible actions to ensure the future sustainability of the world’s oceans, and since 2014, the conference has produced commitments totalling in the region of US$18 billion.
In speaking during the panel discussion on Climate Change, Minister Creed outlined Ireland’s continued commitment to addressing the challenges raised by climate change stating that “the requirement to address knowledge gaps in relation to climate impacts within the marine/coastal environment have been identified as a prospective priority research area to enhance Ireland’s climate resilience”.
Minister Creed highlighted the provision of €10m to the local authority sector in Ireland to aid in the establishment of four Climate Action Regional Offices (CAROs), the continued commitment to the Environmental Educational module of Ireland’s Green Schools programme, continued support of the Clean Coast Programme and the provision of €1mil over a five year period (2019-2024) towards a new programme of Ocean & Climate research in an Irish Higher Education Institution.
Other commitments announced by Ireland included the completion of a €250 million naval vessel replacement programme involving the purchase of four larger more capable offshore patrol vessels tasked primarily with maritime surveillance and fishery protection, and Ireland’s commitment of €32 million for the delivery of three Pilatus 12 aircraft to the Irish Defence Forces in 2019/20.
Alongside the conference, Minister Creed attended a lunch, hosted by President of Indonesia Joko Widodo; met with the EU Commissioner Vella; met Irish attendees at the Our Ocean Youth Summit and met with the USA delegation to the conference to discuss the work of the Atlantic Ocean Research Alliance (AORA).