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Marine, Coastal Science & Survey

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Marine Coastal Science & Survey (MCSS) is the largest sector in the Oceans and Islands Programme. MCSS provides expertise to member countries in oceanography, hydrography, coastal processes and geomorphology, geophysics, hydrodynamic modelling, habitat mapping and geodetic survey.

The Technical Workshop facility is also associated with the MCSS Sector, providing additional personnel and expertise during equipment mobilisation and instrument deployment in the field.

The small size and traditional settlement patterns of member countries commonly results in an almost total concentration of infrastructure, development, dwellings, recreational facilities and food production within coastal, indeed shoreline margins of islands.

These principally coastal communities are then reliant upon healthy coastal zone environments for coastal protection and food security. Resilient coastal zones and shorelines are, in turn, dependent upon living reef systems for continued mediation and wave energy and many are also dependent on reefs for ongoing supply of sediment for beach and land building processes.

There is an increasing trend of requests for OIP, particularly the MCSS Sector, to address issues of climate change adaptation and vulnerability assessments using the sector’s scientific capacity and tools.

OIP will continue to deliver integrated geoscience and technical services to provide sound coastal environmental and resource use analysis and management and development solutions. OIP will strive to improve understanding of natural systems, identifying existing sources of stresses and vulnerability, and developing options for improvement and mitigation.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 July 2013 14:25  


Newsflash

1st August 2014 – Secretariat of the Pacific Community – Koror, Palau: This morning, delegates to the 45th Pacific Islands Forum Leaders’ Meeting in Palau witnessed the signing of a maritime boundary treaty between the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and the United States of America (USA) to delimit the exclusive economic zones (EEZs) between the two countries. Signing the treaty on behalf of FSM was Secretary of Foreign Affairs Lorin Robert; the United States of America was represented by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Dennise Mathieu.

The agreement, which has taken one and a half years to formulate, provides definitive legal status to the boundaries between the overlapping EEZs of FSM and the US Territory of Guam in the North Pacific Ocean.

This agreement underscores the importance of clearly establishing national areas of jurisdiction and limits under the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), which provides the foundation for improved governance, protection, conservation and management of national ocean resources.

The Secretariat of the Pacific Community, through its Applied Geoscience and Technology Division, assists member countries in this process in close coordination with a large consortium of partners who combine resources to deliver comprehensive service and expertise, including the Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency, Geoscience Australia, the Commonwealth Secretariat, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) GRID-Arendal centre, Australian Attorney General’s Office, and the University of Sydney.

The Pacific Islands region has approximately 48 shared maritime boundaries where neighbouring EEZs overlap. With the addition of this signed treaty, 32 of these boundaries are formalised and subject to treaty.