Monterey Bay Area Leaders in Ocean Science and Technology Talk Partnerships for the Future
More than 70 percent of our planet is covered by ocean, but it enables all life on Earth. Understanding this vast and complex maritime domain is beyond the ability of any single organization, which is why the Consortium of Ocean Leadership (COL) convened the first-ever Monterey Ocean Science and Technology (MOST) Summit, hosted by the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI). On January 24, leaders from Monterey Bay area ocean institutions gathered at the MOST Summit to advance ocean science and technology by identifying shared interests and increasing collaborative research and partnership efforts related to ocean research, education, and technological innovation.
The Monterey Bay area is host to some of the most cutting-edge technologies and innovative ocean and coastal research in the world. As our ocean faces increasingly serious challenges, from the changing climate to growing amounts of plastic, the region has a leadership opportunity to develop partnerships and collaborations across stakeholders groups — government, academia, private industry, philanthropy, and more — to advance ocean research and technology and ensure a healthy, sustainable future for our ocean, our people, and our blue planet.
Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20), Julie Packard (Executive Director, Monterey Bay Aquarium), and Vice Admiral (Ret.) Ann Rondeau (President, Naval Postgraduate School) began the day with their opening remarks. Following that, participants described key ocean issue areas and partnerships being addressed at their institutions and then had a robust discussion around what is needed to advance both critical research areas and collaborative future efforts. Participants viewed the event as a seed from which to build future discussions and potential partnerships.
“After spending many formative years here at NPS and discovering so much of what the region has to offer, I can say that the Monterey Bay area is like no other, possessing what I’ve termed ‘Monterey Ocean Magic.’ I’m thrilled at the conversations that were had today by so many of COL’s member institutions and am excited about the prospect of what these local ocean science, technology, and education partnerships can do for our ocean — locally, regionally, and globally,” stated Rear Admiral (Ret.) Jonathan White, president and CEO of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership.
“I am thrilled about the potential of what we can do together with the Consortium. NPS and the Navy have a lot to offer,” said Rondeau. “The talented faculty and students here in Monterey are focused on the security of our shores, but also the stewardship of the oceans many of us called home for years.”
In addition to COL and MBARI, participating organizations included: Congressman Jimmy Panetta’s office; California State University, Monterey Bay; Central and Northern California Ocean Observing System; Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation; Hopkins Marine Station of Stanford University; Monterey Bay Aquarium; Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary; Moss Landing Marine Laboratories; National Marine Protected Areas Center; Naval Postgraduate School; University of California, Santa Cruz; and the city of Monterey.
The Consortium for Ocean Leadership (COL) is a Washington, D.C. nonprofit organization that represents the leading public and private ocean research education institutions, aquaria, and industry with the mission to shape the future of ocean science and technology. In addition to its advocacy role as the voice of the ocean research and technology community, COL manages a variety of community-wide research and education programs in areas of ocean observing, ocean exploration, and ocean partnerships.