Back in 1998, Brest hosted the International Scientific Symposium “20 years after the Amoco-Cadiz”. The unanimous conclusion of the week was that there was a definite need for a meeting place for all the stakeholders of the maritime world whose activity had or would have an impact on the safety of men, ships and or goods at sea, as well as on the coastal and marine ecosystems. Safer Seas was the solution suggested by Brest to meet that need.
Safer Seas is by design a multidisciplinary event, at the crossroad of the different points of views of the maritime stakeholders, whether they come from the institutional, scientific and academic, industrial or seafaring spheres. It offers a one-of-its-kind, multi-sector approach for institutional stakeholders, operators and marine and maritime professionals, enterprises and research institutes, students… It aims at providing a better grasp of the implemented European and international policies in the field of maritime safety and security, at presenting the state of the art of technological innovations and opportunities for cleaner and safer seas, at considering the progress achieved and the new challenges raised by the evolutions of maritime shipping and economy, and at meeting and sharing with international stakeholders and experts.
The issues tackled by Safer Seas have a European and worldwide scope. This is the reason why Brest métropole, supported by the French government and the services of the State, demanded, was granted and got renewed the patronage and participation of some stakeholders and institutions among the most important of the maritime world, such as the International Maritime Organization and other United Nations institutions (UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO…), the European Union, the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), the European Spatial Agency (ESA)…
The international dimension of the event is fulfilled as well by the participation of the network weaved by Brest métropole and the Technopôle Brest-Iroise science park along the years, among city authorities, port authorities, ship owners, seafarers, industrials and maritime clusters from various parts of the world.
Last, but not least, the event’s reputation and the quality it managed to prove each time ever since 2002 has made of Safer Seas one of those expected and anticipated moments for stakeholders from all over the world.
Brest métropole is the project leader, managing the general organization as well as the creation of the conference program, relying on a true expertise in the field of maritime policies and economics and on a thorough knowledge and practice of international, European and local institutions. Local partners such as the Brittany Region, the Maritime Prefecture of the Atlantic, the sea management services of the State at county, regional and national scales (Direction Départementale des Territoires et de la Mer du Finistère, DDTM ; Direction Interrégionale de la Mer "Nord Atlantique Manche Ouest", DIRM-NAMO ; Centre d’Etudes et d’expertise sur les Risques, l’Environnement, la Mobilité et l’Aménagement, CEREMA), the Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service of the French Navy (Service Hydrographique et Océanographique de la Marine, SHOM), Ifremer, Météo France, the head of high level training institutes and the competitiveness cluster Pôle Mer Bretagne Atlantique are fully associated to the process and decisions made, in particular to identify the proper partners and speakers.