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the Blue Economy

Shifting development towards sustainable and responsible practices that prioritize the health of our marine ecosystems and social well-being.

Transforming the Blue Economy (TBE) is a purpose-driven program developed by the New England Ocean Cluster that endeavors to shift the traditional ways of utilizing marine resources towards more sustainable and responsible practices. It involves reimagining and reshaping various sectors within the blue economy, including fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, recreation, renewable energy, and maritime transportation with a focus on environmental stewardship and social well-being.

Through its 5 projects, TBE endeavors to advance and modernize New England’s ocean-minded industries through education and community engagement; by bridging the gap between capacity and need; and by assisting in the creation and implementation of sustainable and innovative enterprises

2023 TBE Logo Cir-01.png

Open Projects: Inclusion  |  Soft Landing  |  The Hatchery  |  EITBE  |  Walk the Working Waterfront


Over the past 16 years, the World Ocean Observatory has advocated for the ocean through communications, as a place of exchange for ocean information, educational service, and engagement by a growing global community of Citizens of the Ocean. W2O has developed a comprehensive website with over 2.5 million annual visitors, an internationally-syndicated weekly radio feature and podcast, an aggregated video channel, an online forum for ocean solutions, a digital magazine, profiles of ocean exemplars, downloadable exhibits, and relentless social media (over 865,000 Followers on FaceBook alone). It has been a gratifying passage, and we are grateful to all for generous and ongoing support, but it is not enough: the urgency of ocean need remains, and critical challenges demand energy, imagination, and innovation. 

The ocean has never been more challenged, nor more essential to our future than it is today. How can we do more? Advocacy through information and communication is not enough; we can no longer merely observe and educate; we must act. And so, as an expanded expression of our W2O mission, we are compelled to invent innovative solutions and seek novel partnerships that will succeed in breaking conventional behavior through the encouragement and introduction of innovative and disruptive outcomes for the future. We call this shift W2.O. 

In the years to come, we will be expanding and imagining new solutions and relationships. We will continue our partnership with UMaine and the UMaine Law School in the Arctic Futures Institute, pursuing research and cultural projects in collaboration with other Maine organizations and the National University and National Museum, in Greenland and other regions in the North. We will launch Seafood/Commons, a traceability software system for global seafood distribution. We will develop World Ocean Explorer, a virtual aquarium as a transformative educational program for ocean literacy. 


And we will join with the New England Ocean Cluster to expand community engagement, education, innovation, and amplified public understanding of the interaction between the ocean environment and social development in a new program – 

Transforming the Blue Economy – advancing trade of sustainable marine resources, renewable ocean energy, new sea products, maritime skills; and other activities that contribute to the future of the ocean, its biodiversity, and its contribution to our community. The sea connects all things. 

We hope you can join us in supporting this new initiative in 2021 and beyond. 

Warm regards, 

Peter Neill, Director 

World Ocean Observatory 

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