In the ‘Norwegian Innovation Clusters’ programme, the “Clean Oceans” was awarded status as an Arena cluster on the 8th of November. The Norwegian technology will be used by the new cluster from the preparedness of oil spill to clear and restrict plastic and other such marine waste in the world’s oceans.
“The new status represents a major recognition of the cluster’s potential for development, now that we are ready to take oil spill prevention and response competencies and technology one step further. We faced tough national competition for the new status, and are extremely proud to now be an Arena cluster,” confirms the new Cluster Manager for Clean Oceans, Eirik Langeland.
The award ceremony was held in Oslo’s Gamle Museet on Friday. The new cluster projects from Innovation Norway was announced by the Minister of Local Government and Modernisation, Monica Mæland.
In order to solve the various challenges that the world is facing because of plastic and other other waste in the oceans and waterways, the combined Norwegian oil spill prevention and response technology will be used. The goal is to make a leading arena in the world for the development of technology and innovative solutions in this area.
“The members of NOSCA have for years been developing successful systems for oil spill prevention and response and have marketed and sold these to the global market. This process has, however, involved a lot of trial and error and new lessons learned. The results of their efforts can now be translated into commercial systems for collecting marine waste,” explains Christian Testman, Managing Director of Ocean Visuals and Chairman of the Board of NOSCA, project owner of the Clean Oceans cluster.
All the required things to become the leaders of the world are available with the cluster members when it comes to dealing with plastic, microplastics and the harmful effect of algae along with oil spills. The complete spectrum of expertise including research, detection, collection and dispoal is represented by the cluster members. ‘Clean Oceans’, the Arena project will be the leading centre of expertise that will be responsible for the handling of marine waste.
“In Norway, we are already the world leaders for oil spill prevention and response. The position as the world leader for systems to collect marine waste and plastic in the oceans has not yet been taken. We’re going to take it,” says Christian Testman.
With the status of Arena, the Clean Oceans cluster is a part of the Norwegian Innovation Clusters programme which will be a led by Innovation Norway, Siva and the Research Council of Norway. New clusters are announced by the programme annually.
“We chose the name Clean Oceans because our challenge is now much more than just oil pollution. The problem of plastic in particular is hyper-relevant, but we’ve also recently seen the extremely harmful effect of toxic algae. We have the knowledge and experience to produce groundbreaking results. Our new status as a cluster will help us obtain financing so that we can start hiring our own employees,” confirms board member of NOSCA and Marketing Director for Framo, Geir Christian Helgesen.