Australia: WOC, AAMA Organize “Oceans, Industry and Rio + 20” Conference

WOC, AAMA Organize Oceans, Industry and Rio 20 Conference

The WOC and the Australian Association for Maritime Affairs (AAMA) are collaborating to ensure that ocean industries have the opportunity to provide input to “Rio + 20”– the decadal UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio de Janeiro, 20-22 June 2012) for which oceans are a thematic priority.

The WOC/AAMA Workshop on “Oceans, Industry and Rio + 20” (Canberra, 4 April) will bring together the diverse ocean business community to provide input to the UN conference via the Australian Government delegation and the WOC. Shipping, fisheries, oil/gas, aquaculture, offshore renewable energy, tourism, dredging, mining, and other ocean industries are invited to the workshop to consider the Rio + 20 marine agenda issues that have major business implications.

These include: amending the Law of the Sea to address marine biodiversity in the high seas, developing marine protected areas, reducing marine pollution/debris, achieving sustainable fisheries, undertaking regular assessments of ocean health, and other proposals. The Australian Commonwealth Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (SEWPaC) is preparing the government’s position for Rio +20 and is interested in input from the maritime industries operating in Australia.

The Australian Government is a leader on the Rio +20 ocean issue negotiations overall, so the Canberra workshop provides ocean industries a unique opportunity for input to the inter-governmental process at Rio +20. The WOC involvement in Rio + 20 is working to provide the eyes, ears and voice for the responsible ocean business community and bring forward the industry input generated at the Canberra workshop, as well as other business community input to the WOC on Rio + 20.

Constructive, coordinated industry action is essential to helping inform and shape international efforts on ocean sustainable development and ensure they are based on the realities of responsible business operations in the marine environment.

The workshop will also discuss development of a multi-sectoral ocean industry leadership alliance in Australia to facilitate collaboration among industries and collective engaging of other ocean stakeholders on cross-cutting issues affecting the future of responsible ocean economic activity in Australia.

Dredging Today Staff, March 19, 2012; Image: westernbasinportdevelopment

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