The third annual conference under the banner, ‘Our Ocean Wealth’ (Galway, July 1), is targeting international and national industry leaders, policy-makers, researchers and maritime entrepreneurs, to debate the latest in marine innovation, spatial planning, ocean ecosystems and sustainability.

OOW 2016

Gerald Fleming, Met Eireann and Eleanor O’Rourke, Marine Institute, check out an AR sandbox used to explain how we map the seabed

‘Into the Blue – Innovating for our Marine Future’ will be addressed by Vice Admiral Mark Mellett, head of the Irish Defence Forces; Sigi Grugber, the European Commission DG Research Head of Marine Resources; Gerald Fleming, Met Éireann; Craig McLean, US National Ocean & Atmospheric Administration and Linda Rosborough of Marine Scotland.

Michael Creed, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, will deliver his first formal address on the marine economy. He said the conference would be an opportunity to reflect on the progress and achivements of Harnessing our Ocean Wealth – An Integrated Marine Plan for Ireland, launched in 2013.

Peter Heffernan, Marine Institute chief executive, noted that this conference was “unique” among international maritime events as it will bring together “global experts” to discuss future opportunities and challenges across all sectors of the blue economy.

“This holistic approach to the global maritime economy, and our focus on Ireland’s blue economy, makes it a must-attend event for everyone working in or involved in marine-related activities.”