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Global Industry Alliance on marine biodiversity officially launched

The Global Industry Alliance (GIA) has been officially launched during an online meeting attended by representatives of the founding industry members CleanSubSea, ECOsubsea, HullWiper and Sonihull as well as the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It is expected that more companies will join the alliance.

The GIA brings together stakeholders in the private sector and the GloFouling Partnerships, a project led by United Nations entities to address the transfer of harmful aquatic species through biofouling and will tackle two of the most pressing environmental issues, invasive species and greenhouse gas emissions.

IMO Secretary-General Kitack Lim said the new alliance will, for the first time, bring together all maritime industries in finding solutions to two key environmental issues affecting our planet – protecting marine biodiversity and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“Under this new initiative, these industry champions, from different sectors, are coming together to address common challenges and move towards a more sustainable use of ocean resources,” he said.

The GIA will accelerate the development of solutions to improve the management of marine biofouling, which is the build-up of aquatic organisms on ships’ hulls or submerged structures such as platforms and aquaculture installations.

The new alliance for marine biosafety brings together private sector companies from various industries affected by biofouling, including shipping, aquaculture, offshore oil and gas and ocean renewable energies. These maritime champions will work together with the GloFouling Partnerships Project, a joint initiative between the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and IMO.

The key aims of the GIA are to leverage human, technological and financial resources; facilitate industry input into policy developments and a positive pull for reform processes; and the development of technological solutions to improve biofouling management. 

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