Better Coordination Between Ocean Industries Needed (USA)

Submarine cables are critical infrastructure for the modern world. Seabed access enables a subsea network such as Arctic Fibre to be built and operated to provide essential communications.

Douglas Cunningham, Arctic Fibre CEO, emphasized that “The seabed is becoming more crowded. To ensure that ocean-based telecommunications can continue to expand and be effective and economical, better coordination between the submarine cable sector and other ocean industries is critical.”

“Arctic Fibre fully supports the World Ocean Council as vital to achieving collaboration among the diverse ocean business community,” stated Cunningham. “We encourage others in the submarine telecommunications community to consider becoming a part of this unprecedented global ocean industry leadership alliance.”

Cunningham added that interaction is especially needed with the oil and gas pipeline and offshore wind energy sectors, and that more work is also needed to reduce man-made damage to cables, for example by fish trawling and ship anchorage.

Paul Holthus, WOC Executive Director, highlighted the business value of inter-industry interaction for the submarine cable sector during his presentation at the Pacific Telecommunications Conference this week. He also noted that the WOC is exploring development of a unique Arctic Business Leadership Council to bring industries together in that region.

Holthus noted that there are significant developments in relation to ocean policy, marine planning and technical issues (such as sound in the marine environment) that will affect industry access to marine areas and resources. There are also important opportunities for the submarine cable sector and other industries to collect and share ocean data, which is the focus of the WOC Smart Ocean/Smart Industries program.

All of these issues, and others, are being addressed in the WOC work program and the Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS), Washington, D.C., 22-24 April 2013. The SOS 2013 brings together the diverse ocean business community, including: shipping, oil and gas, fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, offshore renewable energy, ports, dredging, mining, cables, pipelines, marine science, engineering and technology, the maritime legal, financial and insurance communities, and others.

Press Release, January 25, 2013

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