World ocean council membership and programs grow

September 29, 2010 09:52

Leadership companies from shipping, tourism, marine technology, seafood and marine research join the growing international ocean business alliance, reports with reference to WOC.

The World Ocean Council (WOC) - the international, cross-sectoral industry leadership alliance in Corporate Ocean Responsibility - continues to attract a growing number of companies from a widening array of ocean industries. For some, the commitment was sparked by the Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS), an unprecedented gathering of the ocean business community to tackle shared sustainability issues, held in June 2010 in Belfast, UK.

Lloyd's Register of Shipping, one of the world's oldest companies, has become the newest WOC member. Tom Boardley, Marine Manager, noted, "As Lloyd's Register celebrates its 250th year, we are proud to continue playing a leadership role - now by joining with other responsible ocean companies as Founding Members of the World Ocean Council and working together to ensure the health of the ocean."

The role of industry in maintaining ocean health is also critical to tourism, leading the Cruise Line International Association (CLIA) to come on board with the WOC. "The cruise industry depends on a clean and vibrant marine environment. We are constantly seeking to reduce our ocean footprint and want to work with other industries to help ensure we are all doing our part to protect the ocean through best practices and state-of-the-art technology," emphasized Michael Crye, Executive Vice President for CLIA.

"For the marine technology sector", highlighted PanGeo Subsea Vice-President for Technology Gary Dinn, "the environmental impacts of ocean use create significant risks to continued ocean economic development, but also create major opportunities for technology innovations to provide solutions. The WOC is bringing together responsible ocean industry operators to minimize ocean industry risk and impacts and optimize the business benefits of collaboration. We encourage other leading marine technology firms to get involved."

"Heidmar, as one of the world's leading commercial operators of crude oil and product tankers, is a global citizen, with offices in the US, UK and Singapore," stated Heidmar CEO Tim Brennan. "We take our marine environmental responsibilities very seriously, and know that ensuring the health of the global, interconnected ocean requires global industry leadership. The WOC is an unprecedented alliance of the ocean business community that makes this possible."

Global Trust Certification is showing the way for seafood sector involvement in the WOC. CEO Peter Marshall stressed, "The future of seafood, fisheries and aquaculture depend on a healthy marine ecosystem and we need to work with other ocean industries to maintain a productive marine environment that can sustainably provide food for the world's growing population."

Other new WOC Founding Members include: Almi Tankers, Columbia University's Center for Energy, Marine Transportation and Public Policy, EPJ Consulting, the Professional Marine Explorers Society, the Sea Research Foundation, Sustainable Oceans International, the Athens Group and Sinclair, Knight, Mertz.

WOC Members met after the SOS in June to identify program priorities, which include: engaging the ocean business community in the Convention on Biological Diversity, ensuring coordinated industry input to marine spatial planning, and developing industry involvement in ocean science, observations, data gathering and information sharing.

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