GWI supporting sustainable shipping in Pacific

UNSW’s Global Water Institute and the Institute for Global Development will work with the University of the South Pacific’s Micronesian Centre for Sustainable Transport on activities to support the implementation of the Pacific Blue Shipping Partnership (PBSP). 

The Pacific Blue Shipping Partnership (PBSP) is an open coalition currently comprised of eight Pacific Island Countries—co-chaired by the Republic of Fiji and the Republic of the Marshall Islands—who have announced an ambitious commitment to accelerate development of a 100% carbon-free maritime transport sector by 2050, including a 40% reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from shipping by 2030. The partnership was first announced by the Prime Minister of Fiji in May 2019.

While Pacific island nations contribute only 0.3% of world greenhouse gas emissions, countries in the pacific are most vulnerable to climate change impacts through storm surge, sea level rise and coral bleaching. Sustainable shipping is critical to Pacific countries which are dependent on shipping for as much as 80% to 90% of all goods needed to sustain their population and economies.

Pacific Nations have the most expensive shipping in the world, the longest transport routes, and often the oldest and least energy efficient ships. Collective action with innovative financing is essential to decarbonise this transportation sector and develop a sustainable shipping industry to support these communities.

UNSW Scientia Fellow Dr Ben Milligan currently serves as Coordinator of the PBSP’s International Advisory Committee’s Finance and Governance Working Group. The PBSP is developing a blended finance package of at least US$500 million, enabling a 10-year initial work programme (2020–2030) focused on retro-fit and purchase of low-carbon ships, development of energy-efficient ports and renewable energy infrastructure, finance support for small business, and a regional programme of research, capacity building and training.

The project with USP to advance the finance and governance working group is supported with funds from the World Bank.

For more about the Pacific Blue Shipping Partnership, articles have been published in the Fiji Sun and in the Guardian.

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