Photos of five individuals standing together with Green lawn and bushes in the background.
General Chair for the exposition and Co-Director of the Centre of Robotics and Intelligent Systems at UL, Professor Daniel Toal, UL President, Professor Kerstin Mey, Paul Connolly, CEO, Marine Institute, Professor Philip Nolan, Director General Science Foundation Ireland and Professor Norelee Kennedy, Vice President Research at UL
Tuesday, 6 June 2023

Thousands of international energy and marine engineers, roboticists and scientists among others will attend the global OCEANS 2023 conference hosted at University of Limerick this week.

The event, taking place in Ireland for the first time in association with the Marine Institute, IEEE Oceanic Engineering Society and the Marine Technology Society, will gather delegates from around the world for four days to advance research, practices, and policies under the “Blue Ocean Planet Earth” theme.

The conference will address some of the major challenges facing our global ocean including arresting climate change, switching to renewable (significantly marine) energy and protecting and rejuvenating the world’s oceans. 

OCEANS Limerick brings together key international industry and government stakeholders, buyers, investors, researchers, innovators, academia and policy makers focusing on emerging technologies, new research initiatives, the latest in commercial products and investment strategies over the next decade and beyond to address these internationally agreed challenges.

Technical tracks include renewable ocean energy production, rapid transition to very large scale offshore wind, technologies for ocean stewardship, food supply production and management, green shipping and remote ocean exploration.

Speaking at the opening of the conference UL President Professor Kerstin Mey said: UL is a research-led institution that has launched both its Climate Action Roadmap and a Sustainability Framework - that is a first for any Irish university, so it is very fitting we are playing host to such a strategically important academic conference in partnership with the Marine Institute. 

The rapid pace of societal growth has caused us to exceed many of Earth’s planetary boundaries. We are now living in a deficit – consuming resources at a rate at which they cannot be replenished. The defining challenge of the 21st century will be to balance social progress and environmental boundaries. This conference brings together some of the most advanced researchers, academics and professionals from around the world to find ways to achieve that balance.

Paul Connolly, CEO, Marine Institute said: The Marine Institute is proud to be key partner of OCEANS 2023.   We need technology and innovation to build the new ocean data and knowledge that will inform and inspire the sustainable development of our vast ocean space. This will require new partnerships, new alliances and new thinking if we are to meet the new policy demands around our ocean space. 

This new marine science community has an enormous part to play in meeting the challenges and opportunities of our shared ocean space for the benefit of people, policy and planet.

General Chair for the exposition and Co-Director of the Centre of Robotics and Intelligent Systems at UL, Professor Daniel Toal said: “Oceans 2023 is a hugely significant global conference. The gathered delegates are key players in the community that must get to grips with delivering the Blue Ocean future, delivering the offshore wind transition to carbon-free energy production within circular economies while protecting a resilient ocean. 

The conference will focus on the latest research and innovations, discuss current environmental issues and policies affecting the field, and collaboratively work together to move the fields of marine technology and engineering forward.”

OCEANS 2023 Limerick has been endorsed by the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development and will deal with three clear themes:

1.       Offshore Wind, Carbon Neutral Energy by 2050;

2.       Sustainable Commercial Use of Seas and Oceans; and

3.       Ocean Health and Resilience

The last day of OCEANS 2023 Limerick, June 8, coincides with World Oceans Day.