Atlantic Pillar II & III Webinar: Fostering the Atlantic’s blue economy - Skills for Marine Renewable Energy


The webinar on "Fostering the Atlantic’s blue economy: Skills for Marine Renewable Energy" aimed to explore the importance of developing skills and fostering ocean literacy in the context of Marine Renewable Energy (MRE) and was organized in the scope of the Pillar II and Pillar III of the Atlantic Strategy Action Plan, and the National Hubs of Portugal and Ireland. Fostering the growth of the blue economy in the Atlantic region requires a skilled workforce equipped with the knowledge and expertise necessary to develop and operate marine renewable energy technologies, such as offshore wind, tidal energy, and wave energy. The current gaps in the MRE sector include a shortage of skilled professionals with experience in MRE technologies, limited training programs tailored specifically to MRE, and the need for ongoing research and development to advance the sector, and upskilling and reskilling of value chain actors and new entrants, for instance, provide training and education opportunities for fishermen and other affected workers to acquire the skills needed in the MRE sector. 

This event assembled a distinguished panel of 50 experts from the marine renewables industry, academia, and organizations dedicated to promoting ocean literacy. The main conclusions of this webinar were as follows:

  • Offshore renewable energy has the potential to serve as a beacon of hope in the green transition and mitigation of climate change, and to bring jobs and economic opportunities to Europe in a time when the world is being faced with not only unprecedented environmental challenges, but also cost of living and energy crises. It's therefore of utmost importance that we foster the skills needed to be a leader in this sector
  • Synergies and cooperation across the pillars, in particular pillars II and III, are the key to developing the skills needed in the European population to support the green and digital transitions in the blue economy. We must find ways to work together to make careers in the blue economy attractive to both the younger generation when they are making career and educational decisions, and to those who are looking to upskill or reskill later in life
  • Together, we are shaping a brighter, cleaner, and more prosperous future for the Atlantic

The organization would like to thank the distinguished lineup of speakers from various Atlantic regions, including representatives from the Assistance Mechanism for the Atlantic Action Plan, who shared their invaluable insights and knowledge:

  • Sandra Cruz, ASC Portuguese Presidency, Deputy Director-General for Maritime Policy, Portugal
  • Eoin Leahy, Maritime Affairs Attaché, Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, ASC representative
  • Reka Rozsavolgyi, Directorate-General Maritime Affairs and Fisheries
  • Ana Noronha, Executive Director of Ciência Viva and Pillar II coordinator, AAP
  • Kerrie Sheehan, Head of Research & Technology, Sustainable Authority of Ireland and Pillar III coordinator, AAP
  • Ian Mannix, Skills Development Services, Bord Iascaigh Mhara & Pillar II Task Force, Ireland
  • Ana Brito e Melo, Chief Operating Officer, WavEC Offshore Renewables and Pillar III Task Force
  • Lucía Fraga Lago, CETMAR, Project Coordinator
  • Peter Coyle, Executive Chairman, Irish Marine Renewable Industry Association
  • Céline LIRET, Océanopolis, Brest, Pillar II and IV Task Force, France

It's in such collaborative efforts that it's possible to pave the way for a sustainable, blue future. The Atlantic Action Plan's vision is a guiding light, uniting Atlantic regions in their dedication to our oceans, and Ireland is proud to support the ongoing commitment to ensuring that future generations have the skills they need to thrive in the blue economy.

Missed the live event? Watch the recording HERE