Second Blue Talanoa : Voices of the Future


On May 27th, 2024, the French Embassy in Fiji organised a “Second Blue Talanoa: Voices of the Future”, hosted at the Alliance Française de Suva, dedicated to knowledge exchange and collaborative discussions about ocean conservation and sustainable marine practices between students and marine conservation experts.

With the next United Nations Ocean Conference (UNOC) taking place in Nice, France, in 2025 and co-organized with Costa Rica, the Second Blue Talanoa aimed to encourage discussions and amplify the voices of students and young people about ocean conservation.

Students from The University of the South Pacific (USP) and Fiji National University were invited to participate and reflect on the perspectives in ocean science, policy, and action.

Prior to the workshop and discussions, the 52-minutes documentary Nations of Waters , directed by Professor Geraldine Giraudeau, was projected.

This documentary, a PIURN (Pacific Islands Universities Regional Network) – funded project and led by the University of New Caledonia, explored the legal aspects of climate-induced migration in the Pacific. This insightful projection led to the workshop on the 10 UNOC Themes, such as sustainable fishery practices, deep-sea mining, conserving and restoring marine environment, enhancing regional cooperation.

Dr Awnesh Singh, Acting Director of PACE-SD, encouraged USP students to raise their voice and contribute to innovative solutions for ocean conservation.

His Excellency, François-Xavier Léger, French Ambassador to Fiji, stressed the importance of a solid legal framework to protect climate refugees and encouraged collaborative and insightful discussions between participants. Filimon Manoni, Commissioner for the Pacific Ocean, emphasized in his video message the importance of the ocean for the South Pacific region.

Mathilde Souchon, coordinator of PIURN (also in video message) and Komal Kumar, founder of Ocean Eco Alliance, focused on the crucial role of young people in preserving the oceans and the importance of UNOC 2025.

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