The University of Mauritius which is located in Le Reduit offers various ocean related courses including Geomatics, Marine and Environmental Sciences, Coastal and Ocean Resources, Marine Technology, Climate Change adaptation and Risk Reduction amongst many others. Created in August 2014, this Faculty supports ocean economy.
So what is the difference between Mauritius’ Ocean economy and Seychelles’ Blue Economy?
Ocean Economy: The economic activities that directly and indirectly take place in the ocean, use outputs from the ocean and put the goods and services into ocean’s activities.
Blue Economy: Sustainable Economic activity that acknowledges our dependency on the oceans.
Some might say that the two definitions mean the same thing. But I would disagree, not because of the words but because of what I have seen. Actions do speak louder than words after all.
Being at the University we attended numerous presentations on the impacts of climate change, the contents of the university and how this one professor carried out a dive with a student for a research he was doing on the parrot fish.
But what I preferred the most about that day was when they announced that we would be presenting a video! Yes we brought with us the very renowned National Geographic documentary of Seychelles! This documentary features many islands of the Seychelles, especially the outer islands (in 2015)
No words could describe how proud I was to be sitting there watching the Mauritians “aw” in astonishment when they saw the elegance of the islands, of Seychelles, of my country!
“We are surrounded by ocean how can one not know about it” was one of the many comments that was shared from a Young Mauritian when we (interns) said that awareness is key. Yes, we (Small Island Developing States) are surrounded by the ocean, but I believe in equality and acknowledge that not everyone knows the value of our oceans. But this is why internships like these are organised to spread awareness to the public. I believe one should not condescend someone because he/she ignores our oceans.
With this I would like to thank the University of Mauritius for hosting us and everyone else who organised the itinerary.
Written by Nathalia Lawen.