24 January 2013: Submarine cables are critical infrastructure for the modern world. Seabed access enables a subsea network such as Arctic Fibre to be built and operated to provide essential communications.

Douglas Cunningham, Arctic Fibre CEO, emphasized that “The seabed is becoming more crowded. To ensure that ocean-based telecommunications can continue to expand and be effective and economical, better coordination between the submarine cable sector and other ocean industries is critical.”

“Arctic Fibre fully supports the World Ocean Council as vital to achieving collaboration among the diverse ocean business community,” stated Cunningham. “We encourage others in the submarine telecommunications community to consider becoming a part of this unprecedented global ocean industry leadership alliance.”

Cunningham added that interaction is especially needed with the oil and gas pipeline and offshore wind energy sectors, and that more work is also needed to reduce man-made damage to cables, for example by fish trawling and ship anchorage.

Paul Holthus, WOC Executive Director, highlighted the business value of inter-industry interaction for the submarine cable sector during his presentation at the Pacific Telecommunications Conference this week. He also noted that the WOC is exploring development of a unique Arctic Business Leadership Council to bring industries together in that region. Click here for the report of the WOC 2012 Arctic Business Leadership Council workshop.

Holthus noted that there are significant developments in relation to ocean policy, marine planning and technical issues (such as sound in the marine environment) that will affect industry access to marine areas and resources. There are also important opportunities for the submarine cable sector and other industries to collect and share ocean data, which is the focus of the WOC Smart Ocean/Smart Industries program.

All of these issues, and others, are being addressed in the WOC work program and the Sustainable Ocean Summit (SOS), Washington, D.C., 22-24 April 2013. The SOS 2013 brings together the diverse ocean business community, including: shipping, oil and gas, fisheries, aquaculture, tourism, offshore renewable energy, ports, dredging, mining, cables, pipelines, marine science, engineering and technology, the maritime legal, financial and insurance communities, and others.

About Arctic Fibre: Arctic Fibre’s networks will initially extend across 16,500 kilometres of the ocean, spanning a polar route between Maruyama, Japan and Bude, Cornwall England with a branch extending south through Hudson’s Bay into Chisasibi, Quebec. The network will provide the lowest latency route between North Asia and Western Europe and North Asia and the Northeastern United States. Marine surveys will be undertaken in the third quarter of the year with a scheduled inservice date of November 1, 2014. The network will provide additional resiliency for carriers to overcome natural disasters such as subsea earthquakes and tsunamis, as well as human-caused interruptions to cable service.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Paul Holthus, Executive Director Phone: +1 (808) 277-9008
email: paul.holthus@oceancouncil.org Web: www.oceancouncil.org