SPC Geoscience Division

Home

Launch of Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre in the Pacific establishes ‘centre of excellence’ for the region

E-mail Print PDF

MTCC Launch

13 Dec 2017 | Lami

A landmark event for the Pacific region took place today with the launch of the Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre in the Pacific (MTCC-Pacific). The MTCC-Pacific will become part of a global network, joining centres in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and Latin America. Together, these centres will develop and promote low-carbon maritime transport systems in support of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The MTCC-Pacific will be based in Fiji and hosted by the Pacific Community (SPC) in collaboration with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).

The vision of the MTCC-Pacific, which has been funded by the European Union in partnership with the International Maritime Organisation is to promote a Pacific low-carbon maritime transport that supports the sustainable development goals of PICTs. MTCC-Pacific forms part of the Global Network of MTCCs to work together with MTCCs in Africa, Asia, Caribbean and Latin America to achieve common objectives.

Speaking at the official launch ceremony, Fiji’s Minister for Forests Acting Minister for Fisheries, Hon. Osea Naiqamu highlighted the importance of the Centre both to Fiji and to the wider Pacific community saying, “Fiji is privileged to host the Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre in the Pacific (MTCC-Pacific) on behalf of the Pacific. This centre of excellence will provide invaluable support to Pacific Island Countries and Territories towards progressing their respective priorities and commitments towards achieving sustainable transport and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

The European Union Ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific His Excellency Julian Wilson said: “The EU is proud of the partnership with IMO in supporting the establishment of the MTCC-Pacific in Fiji. This institution has an important role to play on climate mitigation in the maritime shipping sector, thus helping the global community reach the Paris Agreement goals,”

”The EU strongly hopes that this project will help the Pacific countries to accelerate the uptake of technical and operational possibilities to improve the energy efficiency of shipping and promote clean energy shipping. This will have an immediate impact on global GHG emissions.” added Ambassador Wilson.

SPC’s Deputy Director General, Dr Audrey Aumua, emphasised the historic nature of the MTCC launch and highlighted the importance of ensuring that the Pacific is well represented in the global network, given the central role that the maritime industry plays in the region. Dr. Aumua also stressed how this new ‘maritime centre of excellence’ will support the Framework for Resilient Development in the Pacific. “MTCC-Pacific compliments our regional efforts towards the FRDP and will provide us with an effective platform to accelerate progress towards the objectives of our regional climate change mitigation strategy.”

MTCC-Pacific forms part of the Global MTCCs Network (GMN), a project implemented by IMO and funded by the European Union with the overall objective of promoting climate mitigation in the maritime industry and reducing greenhouse gas emissions from maritime transport.

International Maritime Organization (IMO) Deputy Director/Chief, Office of General Services, Mr. Aubrey Botsford welcomed the establishment of MTCC-Pacific noting that, “efforts to mitigate climate change and promote energy efficiency in the maritime sector, through actions taken by Pacific governments and maritime industry, show the dynamic approach taken by your region. IMO is strongly supportive of this approach and of the various actions taken in the Pacific”

Today’s launch was part of a MTCC-Pacific Regional Conference, a week-long gathering of maritime industry leaders and experts from across the globe. The conference will conclude on Friday.

 

Media contacts:

Atishma Lal   SPC Project Information Assistant, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   or +679 337 9402 or +679 9338262.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 24 January 2018 10:09  

Newsflash

Monday 17 June 2013, Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) –  The Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC), with Geoscience Australia, has developed a computer model to help the Government of Tonga see what the impact of a tsunami would be on Tongatapu. Part of an AusAID funded project, the model makes use of high resolution data, the collection of which was made possible by Australia, the European Union, and the New Zealand Ocean Sciences Grant.

The new Tsunami Inundation Model shows that an 8.7 magnitude earthquake in the Tonga Trench would create a wave that would hit the eastern coast of Tongatapu within ten to twenty minutes, inundating most of Nuku’alofa.  Leveni ‘Aho, Director of Tonga’s National Disaster Management Office, says the new computer model has enabled the Government of Tonga to consider how the public would need to respond in a range of possible scenarios.

‘Nuku’alofa has, perhaps, the biggest urban population in the Pacific living in a very low-lying area. We can talk about Japan’s earthquakes but if we can present something that shows what is going to happen to us here at home, the message is much more effective.  For us, it’s an excellent opportunity to help communities to be aware of what could possibly come and what they will need to do if a significant event occurs,’ he says.

After the model was presented to the cabinet and the National Emergency Management Committee, the Hon. Prime Minister Lord Tuʻivakanō indicated that the government would need support to construct access ways to some parts of Nuku’alofa so that the local community can quickly get to safe areas.

Mr ‘Aho says the model is also helping the Government of Tonga to design emergency response measures and improve long-term urban planning for Nuku’alofa and its surrounding villages.‘The tsunami computer model given by SPC has provided the government with a wonderful tool to help us really understand the risks of different scenarios and to prepare in the best ways we can,’ he says.

Mosese Sikivou, Deputy Director of SPC’s Disaster Reduction Programme, says this project is part of SPC’s assistance to Tonga in connection with its Joint National Action Plan for Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Management, approved by Cabinet in July 2010. The work to develop the model is part of an integrated approach that SPC and other partners are taking right across the Pacific to try and maximise scarce resources and minimise duplication of effort and potential conflict in policy development.