Ocean Policy & Governance
May 16, 2016

In the third of a four-part series on writers who have shaped his interest in the ocean and the natural world, host Peter Neill reads from essayist Robert Macfarlane's best selling non-fiction work "The Old Ways: A Journey on Foot", a blend of natural history, travel writing, and more. In it, Macfarlane encourages an understanding of the natural world as a means to discover better paths, new imaginings, and inspirational ways forward.

May 9, 2016

In the second of a four-part series on writers who have shaped his interest in the ocean and the natural world, host Peter Neill highlights the work of American author, poet, essayist, and literary critic Annie Dillard. As one of the preeminent naturalists of our time, Dillard’s close observations of nature remind us that to grasp the micro and macro cosmic elements of our lives requires a willingness to immerse oneself, to listen, and to observe.

May 2, 2016

In the first of a four-part series on writers who have shaped his interest in Nature and the ocean, host Peter Neill highlights the work of 20th century American writer Loren Eiseley. Eiseley was a researcher, teacher, scholar, essayist, and poet. He was an academic who was both a scientist and a humanist, one who maintains a place of eminence in the literary world, now more than 30 years after his death. His work was once described as delivering “science to non-scientists in the lyrical language of earthly metaphor, simile, and narrative…”

April 30, 2016

In this half hour interview with Amy Browne, host of WERU-FM's "Maine Currents", Peter Neill discusses his new book, "The Once and Future Ocean: Notes Toward a New Hydraulic Society." During the interview they discuss fresh water, climate change, ways in which the sea connects all things, plastic pollution, why the ocean matters, and having hope and optimism for the future.

April 25, 2016

As of late March the Obama Administration is no longer considering Cashes Ledge in the Gulf of Maine for national monument designation. This news, delivered to a room of fishing industry regulators, came as a blow to conservationists who have sought monument status for years. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill will offer his thoughts on the rationale which favors preserving this and other essential, bio-diverse seascapes, and that of the fishermen and state regulators who opposed these additional restrictions.

April 18, 2016

The public trust doctrine is designed to protect our natural resources for the benefit of future generations. Plaintiffs in a number of legal cases around the country, with the help of Our Children’s Trust, have been fighting to bring legal action against state and federal governments, claiming not enough is being done to protect their future by reducing global warming. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill will discuss one particular climate change case, a landmark victory in Eugene, Oregon, which rejected all arguments raised by the federal government to deny youth their right to proceed with the case. This is a monumental step forward, proving that plaintiffs do in fact have a right to bring charges of violations under the public trust doctrine.

April 11, 2016

Since the creation and ratification of the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), many international experts have been debating how to create a binding instrument to address marine areas outside of national jurisdiction—the high seas. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill details the complex and time-consuming process of creating and implementing international ocean policy, and hails the work of the many people who contribute to the process of building an effective, practical, and applicable agreement for the benefit of all.

April 5, 2016

Peter Neill, Director of the World Ocean Observatory and host of World Ocean Radio, has recently published a new book, “THE ONCE AND FUTURE OCEAN: Notes Toward a New Hydraulic Society” in which he lays forth the proposition that the age of unlimited growth driven by fossil fuels is over. He claims that a new world view is required now, one around which we can organize our values and behaviors based on our relationship with water: our most precious resource. In this episode of World Ocean Radio he asserts that we must define what comes next, we must welcome and encourage change, we must refine and apply a new paradigm for a new hydraulic society, and that the time to act is now.

March 28, 2016

W2O Director Peter Neill recently spent time in the Galapagos Islands and is back to share his observations from a long-anticipated trip to the UNESCO World Heritage site. In this episode he praises the management of the island which works to protect it from the crush of modern day, and he heralds the work of the under-funded Darwin Center, enlisting the help of the World Ocean Radio broadcast audience in support of the Center’s objectives and plan to ensure the Galapagos remains as natural as possible.

March 22, 2016

In this fourth and final episode dedicated to outlining the complexities contained in the United Nations World Ocean Assessment, host Peter Neill focuses on the State of Oregon in the US, where a robust ocean stewardship program is in place, focusing on many of the issues and utilizing recommendations outlined in the Report.

March 11, 2016

In this third of four episodes dedicated to outlining the complexities contained in the United Nations World Ocean Assessment, host Peter Neill explores the concept of “ecosystem services” as a way to account for absent values when attempting to reconcile the balance sheet of human interaction with Nature. And he explains that activities such as offshore fishing have too many variables to be calculated by conventional measures and must be considered for their full compliment of impacts.

March 4, 2016

In this second of four episodes dedicated to outlining the complexities contained in the United Nations World Ocean Assessment, host Peter Neill explores a partial list of the ocean issues contained in the Report, and argues that this baseline document demonstrates that we know enough about ocean issues and that we have the tools and actions at our disposal to make an immediate commitment and difference in the ocean future.

March 1, 2016

In January of 2016 the UN General Assembly accepted a 1,752 page report entitled "The First Global Integrated Marine Assessment: World Ocean Assessment 1." In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill begins to dive into the massive ocean document and explain its contents, first by outlining its ten basic themes and subsets of issues and challenges.

February 22, 2016

In October 2015 Liberal Party leader Justin Trudeau overwhelmingly won the Canadian election for Prime Minister. In advance of the election, Premier Taptuna of the Arctic territory Nunavut wrote an open letter to the candidates. In it, he asked each to outline their vision for the future of the Arctic. The indigenous people of Canada have long endured unresolved discussions about issues such as environmental sustainability, economic and educational opportunity, access to technology and basic services, and more. Taptuna’s letter may have helped shape an election, further a debate, and generate a response toward a more sustainable Arctic.

February 16, 2016

What does it mean to be accountable for our actions? Individuals are accountable for personal behaviors, commitments, and relationships with those around us. What about corporations? In this episode of World Ocean Radio host Peter Neill questions why corporations are not held to the same standards, and outlines ways in which shareholders and the divestment movement have shown how engaged citizens can encourage and force changes in corporate behavior.

February 9, 2016

The water crisis in Flint, Michigan points to tragic mismanagement of the city’s water supply in an effort to save funds—a decision which is destroying a community and will ultimately cost millions to fix. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill will provide examples of some of the many losses the city and state will incur as a result of this negligence, and will suggest some things that can be learned from the crisis as well as the consequences of a deliberate governmental decision to put corporate and political interests before the health of the governed.

January 26, 2016

Fresh water is the topic of discussion once again on World Ocean Radio. In this episode host Peter Neill re-asserts the gravity of the global fresh water crisis and its cyclical relationship with the ocean. He discusses the shift away from valuing oil rich nations for water rich ones, and submits that the ocean is the inevitable place we will turn for all of the resources we need for a healthy future, from drinking water to medicine, from food to security.

January 19, 2016

The US Navy's SEALAB initiative is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, with now three pioneering aquatic living experiments under their belts to help understand how humans can best survive in underwater conditions. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill salutes the work of SEALAB, outlining their enormous contributions to the development of tools such as breathing devices and medical protections, as well as their contributions to the further understanding of the physical and psychological demands of surviving in an underwater habitat.

January 11, 2016

World fisheries are in crisis, with many species pushed to the edge of extinction. The current system is a recipe for disaster: demand is up; external suppliers operate outside of management regimes; sustainability seems an impossibility. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill will discuss inadequate and controversial management regulations and a new approach called “catch shares” which aim to establish incentives to promote the long-term sustainability of fish stocks. And he will introduce an imaginative concept by some marine-based companies to utilize 100% of every fish caught: for supplements, food products, medical products, clothing, and more, thereby increasing the return of an existing resource.

January 5, 2016

There are many whale-related hot button topics being discussed today: hunting (particularly by the Japanese), seismic testing, inexplicable strandings, the ingestion of plastic pollution, and the growing controversy over the morality of their captivity and exploitation. In this week's episode of World Ocean Radio host Peter Neill discusses the practice of keeping cetaceans for their entertainment value and explores new and proposed bills and legislation in both Canada and the United States which will help to protect cetaceans in captivity, further strengthen existing Acts to prohibit their import and export, to phase out Orcas from entertainment parks, and to modify the criminal code to prevent the taking of cetaceans such as whales, dolphins and porpoise from the wild or to breed those in captivity.

December 29, 2015

At the close of each year, World Ocean Radio host Peter Neill reads "At The Fishhouses" by Elizabeth Bishop. This poem was chosen not only for its relevance for the New Year but because it distills years of Bishop's seaside meditations and evokes the clarity of meaning contained in personal encounters with the world ocean.

December 21, 2015

Record numbers of migrants are taking to the seas to escape political strife, sectarian conflict and war, crossing the Aegean and Mediterranean seas aboard inadequate vessels in search of better and safer lives for themselves and their families. Many are struggling to cope with the sheer numbers: from the coastal nations receiving desperate refugees, to the border management agencies, to the UN and the IMO, to the mariners at sea obligated by maritime tradition to rescue those in crisis on the water. In this episode of World Ocean Radio, host Peter Neill will discuss the complicated geopolitical, maritime and humanitarian crisis we now face.

December 15, 2015

In October of 2015 Peter Neill, Director of World Ocean Observatory and host of World Ocean Radio, attended the bi-annual conference of the International Congress of Maritime Museums in Hong Kong to share his vision for maritime museums in the 21st century. His argument is that maritime history is not outdated, and that every theme evident at all maritime museums: fishing, immigration, trade, technology, etc. are all very relevant today and are perhaps best understood in the context of their history. In this episode of World Ocean Radio he asks for maritime museums to think of themselves less as homes for historical artifacts and more as places to make contemporary connections to the ways in which we relate to the ocean today.

December 8, 2015

The Arctic conversation concludes this week with "An Arctic Vision." In this episode, host Peter Neill focuses on the indigenous Arctic community and how a sustainable economy might be developed based on new policies, practices, employment opportunities, and benefits for the people who live there. And he outlines three key areas in which a sustainable approach might succeed in the Arctic: fishing, shipping, and energy.

December 1, 2015

The conversation continues this week about the future of the Arctic. In this episode of World Ocean Radio host Peter Neill addresses a question he posed in last week's episode regarding the role that the United States might play during the 2-year Chairmanship of the Arctic Council (2015-2017). He uses the specific objectives and initiatives of the U.S. "One Ocean" Plan to back up why he is optimistic about the future of the Arctic.