The Ocean Affairs Council (OAC) and the American Institute in Taiwan Kaohsiung Branch Office (AIT/K) are co-organizing the Ocean Challenge 2020, which be held at Brogent Technologies, Inc. yesterday (3rd November), focused on challenges confronting oceans worldwide.
Deputy Director of AIT/T Raymond Greene indicates that he is very pleased to attend the second Ocean Challenge event, a joint effort between AIT and the Ocean Affairs Council. The scientists, medical workers, officials and business leaders who are responsible for creating the “Taiwan Model” were all once students just like the students who are participating today. The purpose of the Ocean Challenge is to raise awareness among Taiwan’s youth of the critical issues confronting our oceans. We want to inspire the next generation and leverage their innovation to address these serious and complex problems. In doing so, we hope to create yet another “Taiwan Model” for the world, and show once again that “Taiwan Can Help.”
Deputy Minister Tsai Ching-Pao indicates that any work related to the ocean is no easy task. We have to seriously think about how to control the land–based sources of marine pollution and marine debris, and promote ocean environmental conservation, need us to pay much more attention and take actions. OAC cooperated with AIT/K to encourage young people to care about ocean affairs, to strengthen the ability to cope with international ocean affairs, and to promote bilingual education policy. People all over the world can devote themselves to ocean conservation together. We should continue to conserve the marine environment and support sustainable development of the ocean.
AIT invited Mr. Eben Schwartz, Marine Debris Program Manager of the California Coastal Commission, to be the keynote speaker. His topic is “Breaking the Plastic Addiction: California’s Attempt to Find a Solution to Plastic Pollution”. Mr. Eben shared his precious experiences with the audiences on working with hundreds of NGOs, local government agencies, and corporate partners to coordinate beach cleanups as well as developing long-term policies that will stop pollution from its source. His speech brought us new inspirations and stimulated new thinking. He encouraged the audiences to protect oceans and to reduce marine debris together.
The 6 finalist teams of Ocean Challenge 2020 are joint team of Kaohsiung Senior High School & Tso-Ying Senior High School, International Bilingual School at Hsinchu Science Park, National Ping Tung Industrial Vocational High School, Morrison Academy Kaohsiung, International Bilingual School at Tainan Science Park, and Kaohsiung American School. They shared the ideas on topics including marine debris, blue economy, ocean environmental education and ocean plastic waste reduction. The judges include Dr. Julia Huang, director-general of Ocean Conservation Administration, OAC, Dr. Chia-Ying Jessie Ko, associate professor of National Taiwan University, and Dr. Fan Tung-Yung, director of Coral Research Center, National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium. They gave the 6 finalist teams constructive suggestions and comments.
First price team is the National Ping Tung Industrial Vocational High School, second price team is the Morrison Academy Kaohsiung, third price team is the Kaohsiung American School. The proposal of first price team is full of creativity and feasibility, so the team members won the first prize NTD, 30,000 and the certificate. The 6 finalist teams also went to experiencing “fly over America” and “swim under the ocean” i-ride attraction. They are impressive and attractive sporting activities.
OAC Minister Lee Chung-Wei indicates that all countries have been concerning on the issue of marine debris, and Taiwan and the United States pay much more attention on ocean conservation. OAC will continue to strengthen Taiwan-US cooperation relationship, in terms of enhancing marine education, and working together for the sustainable development of the ocean.