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11 August: "A Vision in Blue" - Ten year plan for science, helping drive Australia’s growing blue economy

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11 August 2015
"Used wisely, Australia's ocean resources can generate increasing wealth, food and energy and support sustainable living for generations". Image:AIMS

Canberra: Australia’s vast oceans are a vital part of the heritage, heart and economic future of our country. The value of this marine estate, from a source of recreation, to energy and food production, to safety and security for all Australians is matched only by the enormous economic and environmental wealth that this national asset affords us.

“After much hard work and collaboration, listening to many voices from the science, university and business community over the past few years, we are delighted that today, the National Marine Science Plan (NMSP) is being launched at Parliament House by the Minister for Industry and Science, the Honourable Ian Macfarlane,” said AIMS CEO and Chair of the National Marine Science Committee, John Gunn.

The consensus document from over 23 marine research organizations, universities and government departments and more than 500 scientists and stakeholders, provides a set of recommendations for science that will be at the heart of dealing with the challenges of our marine nation. The Plan focuses on seven key challenges associated with our oceans and it provides a template for how business, science and government can now work towards growing Australian ocean’s economic potential while safeguarding its longer term health.

The National Marine Science Plan identifies the research investments needed to build Australia's blue economy". Image:AIMS

These challenges range from energy and food security; to national sovereignty and safety; understanding the roles of the oceans in climate change and developing effective adaptation strategies; protecting unique marine ecosystems and biodiversity; and ensuring that industry, government and the community have the tools to make good decisions about sustainable development.

“Oceans are critical to our planet and the country’s future as they are key drivers of climate and weather and this Plan outlines the science needed to provide the knowledge, technology and innovation cornerstones that will grow a sustainable blue economy. The NMSP is a call to action, to the nation’s marine scientists, but also to all those who will benefit from a strong marine science sector that is dedicated to working with governments, industries and communities in the mission of ensuring that we get the most out of our marine estate while protecting the things we all care about,” Mr Gunn concluded.

Australia’s marine industries will contribute around AU$100 billion each year to our economy, with our oceans and coasts providing a further AU$25 billion worth of ecosystem services, such as carbon-dioxide absorption, nutrient cycling and coastal protection. Further, the blue economy is projected to grow three times faster than Australia’s Gross Domestic Product over the next decade, more than doubling its current contribution of $47.2 billion a year.


National Marine Science Plan 2015 - 2025: Driving the development of Australia's blue economy (PDF, 4.6 MB)


For more information, contact:

Georgina Kenyon, AIMS Communication,, +61 (0) 7 4753 4265


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