SHIPPINGInsight ended its three-day conference facing the benefits of innovation, along with the reality of…
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Frequently we cite the changes that are occurring in our industry as the most profound since the switch from sail to steam, or the introduction of Malcolm McLean’s container. The greatest difference, though, is today’s changes are occurring within one decade, not several! This acceleration of change is exciting—but also daunting! Where does a company begin? Two areas take center stage this week: geopolitics and communications.
There is an old song: “Everything Old is New Again.” Maritime transportation has always been in the forefront of a government’s defense strategy, but it lost it’s position in recent decades with the prospect that future wars would be fought on economic and cyber arenas. While that may be true, we still need to keep our eyes on the use of maritime resources as assets, whether to enforce sanctions or to help deliver military might.
Rapid changes are the hallmark of communications today which range from the increased number and affordability of low earth orbit (LEO) satellites, to underwater monitoring. Not only will vessel to shore communications receive a much-needed boost, but improvements of a vessel’s position will also be enhanced (with dismay by some). Further advances are being made to monitor what goes on IN the ocean, of which over 80% remains unexplored.
While we barrel through our solar system, let’s try to embrace the changes we encounter and use them for the good of our industry, and the world.