This year’s theme is Decarbonizing the Maritime Industry – Future Challenges & Opportunities.

Maritime Academy Climate Symposium

MISSION STATEMENT: The Maritime Academy Climate Symposium cultivates student-led discourse, awareness, and solutions to the climate challenge through innovation in transportation, energy, science, and business.

VISION STATEMENT: Maritime Academy students and future professionals in the maritime industry will be aware and prepared for the future dynamics of the maritime industry in a changing climate.

The goals of this event include providing knowledge on the ways in which climate change will impact future job prospects and infrastructure, inspiring hope in climate change resilience, and shedding light on opportunities for growth. This year’s theme is Decarbonizing the Maritime Industry – Future Challenges & Opportunities.

Registration & Information

Space is limited, please register to guarantee entry.

If you have a group that would like to attend, please contact

Do you have a question that you would like to have answered during this event? Enter it below and we will do our best to have it addressed.

Tentative schedule

March 27, 2023
Lunch & Learn
with panelists and Symposium sponsors
Introduction of Symposium
Environmental Action Club
Jerald S. 'Jerry' Paul, President of Maine Maritime Academy
National Policy Perspective
Senator Angus King, U.S. Senate
Non-Profit Perspective
Megan O'Leary, Blue Sky Maritime Coalition
Research Perspective
Chris Gearhart, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL)
Industry Perspective
John McDonald, American Bureau of Shipping (ABS)
Commercial Perspective
Jim Mundth, Caterpillar Marine
Implementation Perspective
Linette Casey, Siemens Energy
Student Perspective (Prerecorded)
Panel Discussion
Moderator: Environmental Action Club member
Closing Remarks
Climate Symposium Working Group
Location: Wyman House

Do I need to register to attend in-person?

Space is limited in Delano Auditorium and entry is only guaranteed to individuals that have preregistered.

How do I participate remotely?

  • Watch livestream of the Symposium. (access below)
  • Setup a watch party with others
  • Add questions and comments via YouTube live chat
  • Submit questions prior to event using Have a Question for Panel Discussion form on this page

In 2020, MMA’s Corning School of Ocean Studies launched its new Coastal and Marine Environmental Science (CMES) program, geared at training the next generation of coastal resource managers and scientists. Learn more about our CMES program at

Student looking through scope

The MTI project “Shore Control Center and Training Services” has been completed. The project consisted of three primary goals: development of a Shore Control Center (SCC), instrument and test MMA vessels with the SCC, and utilize the SCC for training programs. Maine Maritime Academy (MMA) worked closely with industrial partner SailPlan, Inc. on the project. The SCC was built at MMA’s Center for Professional Maritime Development (CPMD) in Bucksport, ME. Two MMA vessels, the R/V Quickwater and the R/V Addy Rae, were instrumented with SailPlan remote monitoring systems and integrated into the SCC. In addition, the R/V Quickwater was instrumented with Sea Machine’s autonomous vessel technology as part of a U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) project. Finally, due to changes in SailPlan’s business model, MMA has secured additional funding to develop new training programs at CPMD that will utilize the SCC and MMA vessels.

Specifically for the MARAD Project, we were looking for reductions in fuel consumption and corresponding improvements in CO2 and other emissions with the R/V Quickwater operated in autonomous mode vs manual (manned). The overall result was unfortunately not successful as the automation resulted in slightly higher fuel consumption (and CO2 emissions) in comparison to manned operation using a standardized survey style test. The cause is likely coming from the speed positioner loop which resulted in continuous fine adjustments in throttle to maintain precise speed, which a human operator doesn’t do. It may however, be possible to improve autonomous performance by some additional PID tuning and modifications to the test cycle that would be more difficult for a human operator to match.

collage of pictures

Photos represent emissions testing of these vessels.

Maritime Academies across the country will be receiving new training ships in the coming years, called National Security Multi-Mission Vessels (NSMV). Increased fuel efficiency is a key design goal for the new NSMVs. Learn more about the increased efficiency of these new vessels at

NSMV rendering

Are you interested in becoming a sponsor of the Maritime Academy Climate Symposium? There are two levels of sponsorship available:

Level 1 | Symposium reception sponsor ($500) – As a benefit to reception sponsorship, we would indicate the company’s logo under MACS Reception sponsorship on our website and offer table space at the reception event for promotion.

Level 2 | Symposium event sponsor (between $1,000-$5,000) – As a benefit to event sponsorship, we would indicate the company’s logos on promotional material, offer space on our website for video or resources highlighting company’s work in the renewable energy space, and could organize a lunch and learn with MMA students and MACS participants on 3/27. For larger Symposium-level sponsorship, we could also provide table space to display your materials outside of the MACS auditorium space.

Please contact Kerry Whittaker at for more sponsorship information or to become a part.