A three-day workshop on ship energy efficient operations was organised in Marshall Islands by the Pacific Community (SPC) and was hosted by the University of the South Pacific (USP) at its campus in Majuro. This workshop forms part of the capacity-building efforts of SPC as the Host Institution of the Maritime Technology Cooperation Centre in the Pacific (MTCC-Pacific).
The first day consisted of high-level meeting gathering more than 18 participants, demonstrating the genuine enthusiasm of the maritime stakeholders in initiatives supporting low-carbon development in Marshall Islands. The two remaining days targeted onsite shipping companies’ technical crews, training more than 30 participants on ship energy efficiency management plan (SEEMP) and measures that can be implemented to improve safety and efficiency. In parallel, Women in Maritime meeting was also organised which saw a total of 12 women participation denoting the aspiration to progress gender equality in the maritime sector.
Maritime shipping is the lifeline in the Marshall Islands with a population of 53,000. The population is scattered on approximately 24 municipalities including atolls and those individual islands are serviced by 34 ships. In addition, more than 500 motorised and 600 non-motorised are operated for intra-atoll navigation.
The Permanent Secretary for Transportation, Communications and Information Technology, Mr. Phil Philippo recalled the workshop participants of the country lead to address climate change impact with a clear vision and ambitious targets towards low carbon development. He said: “All sectors must contribute to achieve this vision including the maritime sector that has a major role to play in the reduction of fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. But we are not alone, we have on our side all Pacific Islands countries and development partners.”
SPC through the MTCC-Pacific project has taken a fully collaborative approach and work with its partners to complement efforts in assisting the government of the Marshall Islands achieve its vision for the maritime sector. Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) is implementing a project for Transitioning to Low Carbon Sea Transport in the Pacific and the Government of the Marshall Islands in collaboration with USP has established the Micronesian Centre for Sustainable Transport (MCST) in Majuro.
In his opening address, SPC’s Deputy Director Oceans and Maritime, Thierry Nervale, highlighted the need to take immediate climate change mitigation measures to reduce GHG emissions from the region’s maritime industry, “MTCC-Pacific was established to provide methods and tools for the uptake of low-carbon technologies and operations in the maritime industry, we have achieved promising results in some Pacific Islands Countries that demonstrate leadership and commitments.”
MTCC-Pacific is one of five centres of excellence in the world and forms part of the Global MTCC Network, which aims to build the capacity of developing countries for climate mitigation in the maritime shipping industry. The Global MTCC Network is implemented by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and funded by the European Union.
Since its establishment in 2017, MTCC-Pacific has delivered this workshop in 7 Pacific Island Countries to more than 150 people that is complemented by technical assistance on board more than 30 vessels for the implementation of SEEMP.
Lore Croker, Administration and Information Assistant at MTCC-Pacific Project, Geoscience, Energy and Maritime Division, SPC | [email protected]