Ocean Security Forum 2023
The Stephenson Ocean Security Project highlights the ways that global security challenges arise from marine resource competition and works towards solutions that support sustainable development, coalition building, and the need for American leadership. This year’s forum will focus on the theme of 'Natural Security' and the role that support for resilience, sustainability, and capacity building plays in fostering and building key US partnerships.
The foundational relationship between ecosystem health and human security has been a key discussion plank at both the recent CBD and UNFCCC COPs. The importance of centering this approach in foreign policy has manifested itself clearly in the Pacific over the past year from the announcement of the Indo-Pacific Partnership For Maritime Domain Awareness, to the President’s National Security Memorandum on Combatting IUU Fishing, and the more recent announcement of the Pacific Partnership Strategy. A first panel of national security experts will examine this concept in more detail and describe some of the ways it has matured in the past decade to encompass more tangible processes and outcomes. In addition, we will discuss the recent developments in the Pacific as well as other regions where these concepts may be most readily and successfully applied. A second panel of senior US government officials will consider these concepts and their application in the maritime space through the lens of Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing and the mandates of the Maritime Security and Fisheries Enforcement Act. We will also look towards the upcoming 2023 OurOceans Conference and consider opportunities for making significant progress in aligning work there with other major US environmental and foreign policy initiatives.
8:30 – 8:45 am | Check-in and Coffee
8:45 – 9:00 a.m. | Welcome and Opening Remarks
- Dr. Whitley Saumweber, Director, Stephenson Ocean Security Project, CSIS
9:00 – 10:00 a.m. | Panel Discussion: Natural Security: The Expanding Nexus Between the Environment and National Security Moderated by Dr. Anne Christianson, Center for American Progress
- Dr. Rod Schoonover, CEO and Founder, Ecological Futures Group
- Sherri Goodman, Chair of the Board, Council on Strategic Risks and Vice Chair, Secretary of State International Security Advisory Board
10:00 – 10:15 a.m. | Break
10:15 – 11:15 a.m. | Panel Discussion: The Maritime SAFE Act and its Implications for U.S. Foreign Policy Moderated by Dr. Whitley Saumweber, CSIS SOS
- Dr. Maxine Burkett, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans, Fisheries, and Polar Affairs, Department of State
- Dr. Kelly Kryc, Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Fisheries, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
- RDML Jo-Ann Burdian, Assistant Commandant for Response Policy, U.S. Coast Guard
11:15 – 11:30 a.m. | Concluding Remarks
The Stephenson Ocean Security Project was established through generous support from the Phillip Stephenson Foundation. This forum has been developed in partnership with the CSIS Human Rights Initiative, the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable, World Wildlife Fund, and Oceana.