Hydrography, a science at the basis of a vast economy

The International Hydrographic Organization (OHI) and the International Commission for the Scientific Exploration of the Mediterranean Sea (CIESM) have chosen to renew their scientific cooperation agreement for the next 4 years during the 5th edition of Monaco Ocean Week.

In tribute to the visionary decision of the Grimaldi Family to welcome from their inception the two Intergovernmental organizations in Monaco, the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO since 1921) and the International Commission for the Scientific Exploration of the Mediterranean Sea (CIESM since 1908 ), the two entities wished to sign the renewal of their Memorandum of Understanding during the 5th Monaco Ocean Week (MOW), an event that has become essential and which combines the Principality’s long-standing commitment to marine research and the sustainable use of the oceans with the participation of international experts in this field.

The work of the International Hydrographic Organization (IHO) aims to ensure that all seas, oceans and navigable waters of the world are surveyed and mapped, as the marine environment is constantly changing, either due to climate change, extreme events or simply the movement of tides and currents.

The economic benefits of up-to-date knowledge of the marine environment can be considerable. For most ships, for example, an additional depth of 30 cm indicated on a map allows at least 2000 tonnes of additional cargo to be carried.

Hydrography is therefore the basis of all sea-related activities (maritime borders and law enforcement, navigation safety, search and rescue, maritime defense and security, marine sciences, maritime spatial data infrastructure, modeling floods and floods due to the tsunami, pleasure boating) but also commercial activities (tourism, shipping, protection and management of the marine environment and management of coastal areas for fishing, aquaculture and mariculture, or the use of marine resources including minerals, oil, gas, and renewable energies).

Hydrography helps stakeholders (states, industry, investors, researchers) to monitor these changes and adapt their various strategies, to resolve broad issues (such as sea level rise) and promote sustainable coastal adaptation (identification of development areas, infrastructure, security in the event of a climate disaster, etc.). The latest publication of the International Hydrographic Review can be viewed here.

The renewed agreement between the International Hydrographic Organization (OHI) and the International Commission for the Scientific Exploration of the Mediterranean Sea (CIESM) provides a framework for scientific cooperation geared towards:

– Strengthening scientific and technical synergies in their research and monitoring activities of marine waters, in particular high-resolution mapping of the seabed, monitoring of changes in the marine environment in the context of climate change, the use of ships, and opportunity to gain data and input into global ocean initiatives;

– The exchange of experiences in capacity building, training and knowledge transfer to their partners;

– Technical advice to strengthen the marine policy of the requesting international organizations and conventions.

During this event, Dr Vladimir Ryabinin, Assistant Director General and Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (COI) of UNESCO said that the OHI, CIESM and COI will work together towards the common goal of an increased knowledge of the global ocean and its protection. A willingness fully in line with the United Nations global project “UN Decade of Ocean Science“.

For Professor Frédéric Briand, Director General of CIESM, the naval and scientific networks of the two organizations in the Mediterranean could join forces to acquire oceanographic data related to global warming and marine geo-risks in particular.. He recalled that there are more than 900 large submarine canyons in the Mediterranean and the Black Sea and that the Mediterranean is the third basin most vulnerable to tsunamis. He also stressed that up-to-date and accurate data can be used to try to predict and mitigate the impact of tsunamis, and thus help people to be better prepared.

Article: Joana Foglia – Source : Communication Department of the Princely Government of the Principality of Monaco, OHI, CIESM

Post Author: Wealth Monaco