Atlantic – Our Shared Resource Conference – Brussels – April 16-17 2015

For two days in Brussels the topic was the Atlantic Ocean and shared resources and research and programs between the EU, USA and Canada.

The agenda and all materials are posted on this page http://ec.europa.eu/research/bioeconomy/news-events/news/20150430_1_en.htm

All presentations are on You Tube here https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLvpwIjZTs-LhUfKmMhDfZmiWnke03rSfv

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European Commission has included a number of Atlantic Ocean Research Topics in its Horizon 2020 Programme (2014-2020)

We recently received an email from Geoffrey O’Sullivan updating us on the status of European Funding Announcements.

Letter follows

Dear Colleague/Atlantic Conference participant

On behalf of my CEO, Dr Peter Heffernan and the Irish Team involved in the very successful Trans-Atlantic Conference (23rd May 2013) and the Galway Statement on Atlantic Ocean Co-operation (24th May 2013), we are delighted to be able to inform you that the European Commission has included a number of Atlantic Ocean Research Topics in its Horizon 2020 Programme (2014-2020) and indicated that selected “projects should benefit from the inclusion of partners from the US and Canada”.

The 2014-2015 Work Programme plus call texts were officially launched on 11th December in Brussels.

Projects of particular relevance to trans-Atlantic co-operation are:

  • BG-8-2014: Developing in-situ Atlantic Ocean Observations for a better management and sustainable exploitation of the maritime Resources;
  • BG-14-2014: Supporting International Cooperation Initiatives: Atlantic Ocean Cooperation Research Alliance;
  • BG-1-2015: Improving the preservation and sustainable exploitation of Atlantic marine ecosystems.

Other topics which will be of interest include:

  • BG-13-2014: Ocean Literacy – Engaging with Society – Social Innovation;
  • BG-15-2014: European Polar Research Cooperation;
  • BG-7-2015: Response capacities to oil spills and marine pollutions.

The Horizon 2020 Programme was officially launched in Brussels on Wednesday 11th December and call texts and supporting information are available at:


For information on the Blue Growth (Marine Science) projects see: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/opportunities/h2020/search/search_topics.html and input search word (e.g. “marine”).

Geoffrey O’Sullivan
Senior Policy Advisor – International Co-Operation
Office of the CEO
Marine Institute
80 Harcourt Street
Dublin 2
Tel: 00-353-91-387200 / 00-353-1-4766523
E-Mail: geoffrey.osullivan@marine.ie
Harnessing Our Ocean Wealth: An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland (2012): www.ouroceanwealth.ie
European Union adopts Maritime Strategy for the Atlantic (May 2013): http://www.marine.ie/home/EuropeanCommissionadoptsMaritimeStrategyfortheAtlantic.htm
Galway Statement on Trans-Atlantic Ocean Cooperation (2013) between the European Commission, United States of America and Canada EU-USA-Canada  http://www.marine.ie/home/EUUSCanadalaunchAtlanticOceanresearchallianceinGalway.htm

Horizon 2020: http://ec.europa.eu/research/horizon2020/index_en.cfm

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Workshop on Transatlantic Ocean Literacy, Plymouth UK, 5-6 September 2013

A  workshop  on Transatlantic Ocean Literacy was held at the Marine Biological Association and the Marine Institute at the University of Plymouth following the EMSEA conference on the 5th and 6th of September 2013.

The agenda is here http://www.coexploration.org/oceanliteracy/atlantic/Agenda_Transatlantic_Ocean_LiteracyV3.pdf

Group Picture    http://www.coexploration.org/oceanliteracy/atlantic/tolworkshop2013.JPG

A number of topics were discussed.  The group decided to draft an agreement about Transatlantic Ocean Literacy following the format of the Ocean Science Galway Agreement signed in May 2013.

Mr. Waddah Saab from the EU discussed developments for the  EU Horizon 2020 round of research that is being developed. Possible opportunities for projects to be funded by this call were discussed.

Representatives from the USA and Canada presented ideas for collaboration and ways that existing projects might be used to encourage Transatlantic Ocean Literacy. No specific funding opportunities are anticipated.

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The Atlantic – Shared Resource

On 23rd May 2013, marine scientists from the United States of America, Canada and Europe gathered in Galway (Ireland) to identify the key scientific and societal challenges that need to be addressed in order to deliver (by 2020) a predictive capacity [both short term predictions and long term forecasts] for the major risks and changes in the dynamics of the North Atlantic.
In identifying key challenges, the participants supported the view that a North Atlantic Ocean Observation and Forecasting Capacity is essential to address key scientific, environmental, governance, policy and societal challenges of mutual concern and that cooperation would result in mutual benefits including better ecosystem assessments and forecasts, a deeper understanding of vulnerabilities and risks including those related to global climate change and climate impacts (e.g. sea-level rise, shifts in biogeography of commercially important species, etc) and other anthropogenic impacts including those related to resource exploitation (e.g. fisheries, deep sea mining, etc). Furthermore these activities will create new opportunities for job creation and economic growth, referred to in Europe as blue growth.

On 24th May 2013 a wider group of scientists, educators and policy makers gathered to discuss ways to encourage greater cooperation, communication and collaboration and to seek ways to implement the agreement.

The conference was at the Marine Institute, Galway, Ireland

Here are the two documents that reflect the agreement and also provide the report of the scientific workshop.

Atlantic Programme Signed

Galway 2013 Scientific Workshop Report FINAL


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Deborah Cramer – author of Great Waters – An Atlantic Passage –

The College of Exploration organized a workshop for former NOAA Teacher at Sea participants.

Deborah Cramer was an invited speaker to this group of educators.


At the end of the above presentation Deborah Cramer plays a video about the book Ocean she wrote. Here is the video with great clarity and better sound.


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European Commission unveils maritime strategy for the Atlantic

The European Commission on Maritime Affairs announces today an Atlantic Ocean Action Plan

press release http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-13-420_en.htm

The plan http://ec.europa.eu/maritimeaffairs/policy/sea_basins/atlantic_ocean/documents/com_2013_279_en.pdf

and an Atlantic Forum Forum



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Atlantic Ocean Literacy – a conversation

This conversation started many centuries ago.

A group of marine and ocean educators and scientists attending the U.S. National Marine Educators Association annual meeting in Boston in 2011 discussed ways to encourage sharing learning between Europe, the USA and Canada. A proposal to launch the idea was submitted to ESOF 2012 in Dublin.  The result was a combined presentation on July 12, 2012 a 1.15 pm.


The ESOF 2012 meeting also featured a panel on the Atlantic as a shared resource


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