Sustainable Sea Transport Conference

The Vaka Taumako Project’s Drs. Mimi George and Simon Salopuka, as well as members of the Holau Kaveia crew, will be presenting papers and holding discussions at the 2nd International Sustainable Sea Transport in the Pacific Talanoa, July 14-18 2014 in Suva, Fiji.

Hosted by the University of South Pacific:

The Talanoa will provide a platform for participants with an interest in sea transport and seafaring to interact with each other, share knowledge and experiences, and foster collaboration.  It will provide an opportunity for networking, showcasing expertise and research, and planning for the benefit of the Pacific region.  The Talanoa will highlight contemporary issues and identify priorities for future effort.  The talanoa aims to:

  • celebrate Oceania’s seafaring heritage; and
  • continue the conversation amongst key stakeholders to progress towards a low-carbon sea-transport future for the Pacific.

Building on the first successful Sustainable Sea Transport Talanoa held in Suva in 2012, the 2nd International Sustainable Sea Transport in the Pacific Talanoa will again bring together key stakeholders with an interest in heritage, culture, seafaring, science, vessel design, economics, policy, regulation, and industry to celebrate Oceania’s seafaring heritage and progress planning towards a sustainable seafaring future.

Sea transport is the Pacific’s lifeline.  Issues of sea transport remain universal and primary, a basic human need of Oceanic peoples today and tomorrow as throughout all past human interaction with the Pacific.  The region’s transport issues are unique; tiny economies scattered at the ends of some of the longest transportation routes in the world and arguably the most challenging network to maintain per capita and per sea mile with the resource base available to support it.  Sea transport is essential at all levels of society from fishing and local transport needs of small isolated islands and villages to inter-regional shipping needs of nation states.  Yet Pacific Islanders once moved at will around the Pacific using only renewable energy-powered vessels.

The Talanoa will be of interest to communities, seafarers, government agencies, NGOs, research institutions, regional organisations, and shipping and boat building industry.

The overall theme for the 2014 Talanoa is “Celebrating the Past – Sailing into the Future”.  The Talanoa will be held in Fiji, and it is hoped that a growing number of participants will join the existing network of stakeholders.    We invite industry, community representatives, seafarers, artists, researchers, policy analysts and policy makers, government departments and agencies, and international institutions and organisations to submit abstracts (not more than 300 words) on the following broad themes:

  • Heritage Revival, Pacific Voyaging, Traditional Navigation, Arts (weaving, carving, performance)
  • Networks, Collaboration, Relationships
  • Sea Transport Impacts, Technology and Innovation
  • Blue/Green Economies, Financing, Policy
  • Research, Training, Qualifications, Regulation

Drs. George and Salopuka will be presenting research from their abstract: Superior Design and Performance Features of Nga Vaka o Lata; Sustainability and How Ancient Vessels Are Better

We hope to see our Fijian friends and fellow voyagers there!