A long-term partnership between Defence and members of Australia’s hydrographic industry has been established with the commencement of the new HydroScheme Industry Partnership Program.
Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Michael Noonan, AO, RAN said that through the program, industry will be able to use the latest hydrographic techniques and state of the art equipment to deliver quality hydrographic data to Defence, who chart and disseminate this information.
“The HydroScheme Industry Partnership Program is a $150 million Government investment in Australia’s commercial hydrographic industry over the next five years,” Vice Admiral Noonan said.
“This is the first step in an ongoing partnership with Australia’s commercial hydrographic industry.”
Under the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea 1974, the Australian Government has an international obligation to provide hydrographic services covering the Australian Charting Area.
Defence is charged with the responsibility to deliver these services to the nation, on behalf of the Government, through the Navigation Act 2012.
A panel of six Australian and one New Zealand-based hydrographic survey companies will support Defence in conducting maritime surveys which enable safe navigation for mariners and support Australia’s maritime industry. The panel members are:
· Discovery Marine Australia Ltd – Tauranga, New Zealand
· FUGRO Australia Marine Pty Ltd – Perth, WA
· iXblue Pty Ltd – Wynnum West, QLD
· EGS Survey Pty Ltd – Mount Lawley, WA
· Guardian Geomatics Pty Ltd – Subiaco, WA
· Neptune Geomatics Pty Ltd – Welshpool, WA
· Precision Hydrographic Services Pty Ltd – Glandore, SA.
The Panel will be administered by the Australian Hydrographic Office in Wollongong, NSW, which coincidently will be celebrating its 100 year anniversary on 1 October 2020.
With the transition of the national surveying responsibility to industry partners, the Navy survey capability is being redeveloped to focus on military environmental information collection to support Australian and allied maritime operations. The next Navy military survey vessel will be built in Henderson, WA, in the 2020’s.