On 1st of June 2021, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research in partnership with the IOC celebrated the High-Level Launch of the UN Ocean Decade. For Okeanos it was clear that voices of the Pacific and other ocean communities would have to be included. Their knowledge and their ocean management practice in collaboration with ocean science will play an important role within the decade in creating the oceans we want.
Therefore we are delighted that during the ‘Virtual Ocean Voyage’, showcasing the daily work of scientists around the globe, Dr. Ian Schipper from the Volcano Waka Lab gave an insight into research with an Okeanos Vaka Motu. The Senior lecturer from Victoria University of Wellington / NZ explained the importance of collaboration between scientists and local knowledge holders enthusiastically, making clear how important these collaborations will be during the UN Ocean Decade.
In the second part of the conference focusing on the outcomes, the world was invited to listen to people who travel the ocean daily and whose livelihoods depend on marine ecosystems. In this session, Okeanos fleet commander Peia Patai from Cook Islands gave an insight into his strong bond with the ocean, on Traditional Navigation and Okeanos Sustainable Sea Transportation in the Pacific, reminding us all of the responsibilities we have in preserving our oceans for the generations to come.
Ali Haleyalur, Okeanos cultural advisor from Yap, FSM, explained the importance of keeping traditions alive to protect oceans and human communities living with and off the ocean. Ali is teaching Traditional Navigation to students at COM-FSM who recently set sail to their first practical training unit with Okeanos.