2017 Blue zone conference
Australia has an extensive framework for cooperation spanning political, economic, security, development, education, and people-to-people ties with our neighbouring ‘in the zone’, Indian Ocean countries. While the future of the Indo-Pacific unfolds against a maritime backdrop, we must address the issues, challenges and opportunities that face our collective nations as the maritime realm continues to shape our politics, technology and livelihoods.
In collaboration with The University of Western Australia, the Perth USAsia Centre is pleased to announce that the 2017 In the Zone Conference – “The Blue Zone” will be held on 2nd October 2017 in Perth, Western Australia, hosting the Honourable Julie Bishop, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party as the keynote speaker.
This year’s In the Zone Conference will spark a regional discussion that aims to contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG14) of seeking to ‘Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources’.
Security - With 90 percent of global trade now transported through maritime shipping routes, the sea is becoming a highway of ever-increasing activity. The Indo-Pacific maritime domain is threatened by challenges like piracy and maritime territorial disputes. In the 21st century, how can countries cooperate in the Indo-Pacific to solve security problems within the maritime realm?
Resources - With the sea floor potentially housing substantial reservoirs of oil and gas, and oceanic fish and agriculture reserves capable of feeding millions of people, the ocean is unquestionably rich in resources. As the global population rapidly grows and global demand increases, what kind of resource policies should governments develop and how can we best utilize innovative technologies?
Environment - As the world must make a collective effort to protect the oceans for future generations, so too must a unified effort to safeguard Indo-Pacific maritime biodiversity be undertaken. The oceans contain rich eco-systems, and the biological and chemical processes in the sea may hold the solutions to challenges like climate change. How do we reduce pollution, protect species from climate change, and ensure sustainable consumption?