The hub will be hosted by the Indian Ocean Marine Research Centre at the University of Western Australia
Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne has announced the establishment of a scientific hub that will protect the health of ocean carbon ecosystems.
Payne made the announcement at the 3rd Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) Ministerial Conference on Blue Economy held in Dhaka on Thursday.
The IORA Indian Ocean Blue Carbon Hub will help build the capacity of 22 IORA member states to protect and restore blue carbon ecosystems, said the Australian High Commission in Dhaka on Friday.
The hub will be hosted by the Indian Ocean Marine Research Centre at the University of Western Australia.
The Morrison government and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization (CSIRO) will jointly fund its activities with $600,000 over three years.
“We collectively have the opportunity to lead the world in using blue carbon for climate mitigation and adaptation, as well as sustainable economic development," Marise Payne said.
"Australia is fully committed to working with its partners around the region to protect an ocean that is so vital to our shared interests over generations to come,” she added.
In the coming days, she said, early career scientists and other professionals from member states will be able to apply to visit and work at the hub under a young scientist program.
The hub will hold a “think tank” symposium in February with a focus on developing blue carbon finance.
Director of the hub, Dr Mat Vanderklift said blue carbon ecosystems are highly effective at carbon storage and it also supports coastal fisheries and protects coastal communities against storms.
“The Indian Ocean is disproportionately important in blue carbon globally. The hub will allow us to accelerate action and go beyond talking about it, to doing something about it,” he said.