SPREP and IRD MOU signing
Island and Ocean Ecosystems

During the SPREP Partnership Dialogue on the 4th of September 2023, a new MoU between SPREP and IRD, the French Research Institute for Sustainable Development, has been signed by SPREP Director General Mr. Sefanaia Nawadra and Ms. France Bailly, Head of IRD Office in New Caledonia, for a 5-year period.

This new MoU aims to strengthen current and forthcoming collaborations between both organisations in different areas, among others coral reef biology and monitoring, marine species, climate services, and environmental and geospatial data to name a few.

IRD is one the main scientific and technical French organisation in the Pacific region, with a broad range of expertise and conducting research, surveys and projects with a strong vision of including different stakeholders to achieve Sustainable Development Goals.

Thanks to this expertise and scientific research and knowledge, IRD is engaged in and has been supportive of SPREP’s programmes and initiatives, for example the development of the Pacific Islands Regional Marine Species Programme.

Ocean and Climate Change are two of the main key areas in which IRD is committed in the Pacific, as highlighted for example through the Pacific Ocean Sustainable Pathways (PACPATH) project coordinated by IRD. SPREP has been fully engaged and sits on the Science-Society Council of the PACPATH project, which develops transdisciplinary and participatory research on sustainability issues and pathways in New Caledonia and Fiji as both case studies and pilot countries. 

The AFD-funded CLIPSSA project (Pacific Climates, Local Knowledge and Adaptation Strategies), started in 2022 with IRD and Météo-France as the main implementing partners, is another example of potential collaboration, where SPREP is identified as a key partner to ensure climate data and project deliverables are accessible and shared within the region.

Other collaborations and activities listed under the MoU cover other areas which both organisations are committed to, specifically traditional ecological knowledge related to climate change, coastal ecosystem conservation and restoration, environmental and geospatial data (following SPREP participation to the last Oceania Geospatial Symposium in New Caledonia), as well as training and capacity-building activities on many topics covered by SPREP and IRD. 

Renewing this MoU with IRD is finally part of other initiatives to strengthen collaborations and regional cooperation between SPREP and French territories and institutions. SPREP is therefore looking forward to developing new collaborations with IRD to support its strategic plan in different areas working towards a “resilient Pacific environment sustaining our livelihoods and natural heritage in harmony with our cultures”.