Please select your home edition
Edition
C-Tech 2020 Tubes 728x90 TOP

Science sets sail: New partnership between UNESCO's IOC and IMOCA Class signed in Paris

by IMOCA Globe Series 31 Jan 2020 12:14 PST
Antoine Mermod, President IMOCA and Vladimir Ryabibin, Executive Secretary - IOC UNESCO © IMOCA

A partnership agreement between UNESCO's Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and the International Monohull Open Class Association (IMOCA) was signed today at UNESCO headquarters in Paris, France.

Over the next two years, the two partners will carry out joint projects to support marine scientific research and to raise awareness about the importance of ocean science for the protection of the ocean and the sustainable use of marine resources.

The activities will be coordinated by a Joint centre for oceanographic and marine meteorological observing programme support (JCOMMOPS) - a collaboration between the IOC and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) - which internationally coordinates about 10,000 in situ ocean observing instruments for the continuous monitoring of the global ocean and the atmosphere above it.

Founded in 1991, the IMOCA manages the class of 60-foot (18.28 metres) open monohulls. The aim of the class is to develop the fleet of monohulls and offer its skippers an attractive and coherent sports programme, which includes the well-known races Route du Rhum, Monaco Globe Series, and The Vendée Globe and The Ocean Race, among others. It contributes to the internationalisation of offshore racing and combines the notions of competition, innovation, human adventure and safety. Further, central to IMOCA is how to constantly respect the environment better.

"Our skippers each share a variety of unique experiences; navigating to the most isolated corners of the globe whilst witnessing first-hand our impact on the World's oceans. As a result, the IMOCA Class understands the urgent need to protect and preserve our seas, making our work with UNESCO's IOC even more valuable." The IMOCA class.

Navigating in much more agile and nimbler boats than heavier traditional scientific vessels, the competitive sailing boats of the IMOCA class can reach areas of the ocean that are poorly served by regular maritime traffic. Gathering ocean-atmosphere data with on-board instrumentation all along the track and deploying Argo profilers and surface drifters are very valuable contributions to the Global Ocean Observing System coordinated by UNESCO's IOC.

Back in October 2019, navigator Alexia Barrier and co-skipper Joan Mulloy of 4myplanet deployed an Argo float donated by the French consortium Coriolis off the Bay of Biscay, during the Jacques Vabre Transatlantic yacht race from Normandy to Brazil.

Other crews (Boris Herrmann and Will Harris of Malizia, Stéphane Le Diraison and François Guiffant of Time For Oceans, and Fabrice Amedeo and Eric Péron of Newrest-Art & Fenêtres) contributed to the collection of scientific data, by taking aboard two weather drifter floats developed by a Copernicus-funded project from EUMETSAT (TRUSTED buoys), and an oceanographic sensor capable of measuring levels of CO2, salinity and surface temperature. The deployment of these observing systems was coordinated by JCOMMOPS (IOC-UNESCO/WMO).

"Everyone has his or her role in the journey to a sustainable ocean, sometimes in distant and less accessible parts of the ocean. The sailing boats of the IMOCA Class will be special contributors to ocean observations, helping to collect crucial ocean data," commented Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of UNESCO's IOC to welcome the partnership between sailing and science.

To mark the signing of the partnership agreement, five renowned skippers (Fabrice Amedeo, Alexia Barrier, Boris Herrmann, Stéphane Le Diraison and Paul Meilhat) participated this morning in a "Campus UNESCO" with young students from French schools to share their experience as professional sailors committed to promoting science for the protection of our shared ocean.

Related Articles

Vendée Globe Day 74: Seven days to destiny
Louis Burton could benefit from his position further west but has been slowed for two rankings The race at the front of the Vendée Globe is electrifying. None of the eight previous editions has ever witnessed a race finish as open and intense. Posted on 20 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 74 morning update
Charlie Dalin 'I need to be in good shape for this last bit' The leader is not overly worried. He expects to reconnect with Louis Burton - who is to leeward and working NW - as they reach the south of the Azores. But the final stage seems more complex in a SW'ly wind which needs to be utilised at the best angles. Posted on 20 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 73: Happy, Super Happy
Charlie Dalin leads and Louis Burton carries on to the North West The Vendée Globe remains wide open. A leading group of nine skippers form the vanguard with a slight advantage for two skippers, Charlie Dalin and Louis Burton. Posted on 19 Jan
Prada Cup, PATRIOT's near-sinking, Vendee Globe
The latest newsletter from Sail-World's David Schmidt in the USA It seemed as though just a few weeks ago, most of the sailing community was beginning to sing dirges for Sir Ben Ainslie and INEOS Team UK. After this weekend, that crooning has clearly ceased. Posted on 19 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 73 morning update
Fast and low or high and slower? After more than 25,000 miles of racing this Vendée Globe hangs in the balance. Who will win? At the head of the fleet now Charlie Dalin has been in first place 178 times since November 8th when the race started, Louis Burton has been in first twice Posted on 19 Jan
Servane Escoffier: We can't wait to give him a hug
You don't hear a lot about the home front during the Vendée Globe You don't hear a lot about the home front during the Vendée Globe, but every IMOCA sailor trying to complete his or her dream on the world's oceans right now has loved ones waiting for their safe return and following their every move. Posted on 19 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 72: Climbing to a final battle
Fast Burton and consistent Dalin's northwards duel in the trades, Herrmann's hard 24hrs With less than two weeks - perhaps even just ten days - until the finish of what is set to be the closest ever edition of the Vendée Globe it is still impossible to predict which three skippers will finish on the podium. Posted on 18 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 72 morning update
Burton on the button, first out Doldrums It seems to be Louis Burton on Bureau Vallée who has finally escaped from the Doldrums first. He has been making a consistent 17kts early this morning in the 16-18kts NE'ly trade winds which seem to be well established. Posted on 18 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 71: Dalin leads Atlantic climb
Apivia skirts round the worst of a dynamic cloud system The Doldrums did not give up the Vendée Globe leaders as easily as was initially predicted but first placed Charlie Dalin (Apivia) appears to have skirted round the worst of a dynamic cloud system and emerged this afternoon with his margin intact. Posted on 17 Jan
Vendée Globe Day 71 morning update
Louis Burton on Bureau Vallée 2 first back into the northern hemisphere Louis Burton, the 35 year old Saint Malo skipper of Bureau Vallée 2 was the first Vendée Globe skipper to break back into the northern hemisphere last night, crossing the Equator at 1911hrs UTC last night. Posted on 17 Jan
Doyle Sails 2020 - Pure Brilliance 728x90 BOTTOMSOUTHERN-SPARS-MISSY-FURLING-BOOMS-728-X-90 BottomSelden 2020 - FOOTER