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March 17, 2015

The County of San Diego and the City of San Diego today approved a maritime vision for the region that will include forming a Blue Tech incubator to create jobs and businesses.

The maritime vision was approved unanimously today at separate meetings of the County Board of Supervisors and the City Council. Speakers, including representatives from the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, supported the vote.

The joint action promotes “San Diego as a leading global maritime technology center,” according to a resolution. The Port of San Diego is expected to vote on the vision in April.

As part of that vision, the agencies will develop a Blue Tech incubator to create more jobs and businesses in water technology, aquaculture, underwater robotics and other related industries.

“Our Blue Economy already includes 1,400 maritime-related companies with over 46,000 employees but we’re just scratching the surface of what we can do with it,” said County Supervisor Greg Cox. “A regional vision and a Blue Tech incubator will help us realize the full potential of our Blue Economy.”

Mayor Faulconer said: “Thanks to our fast-growing Blue Tech economy, San Diego has yet another opportunity to be a global leader in technology and innovation. Our coastal city is uniquely position to be the perfect global breeding ground for water-related innovation and jobs. I’m proud to lead this effort that is a big step toward creating a Blue Tech incubator and related Center of Excellence and putting San Diego front and center for Blue Tech globally.”

Supervisor Cox has championed the Blue Economy with support from The Maritime Alliance. Last year, working with the Port, the Supervisor pushed for the temporary opening of a fishermen’s market at Seaport Village. He is working with State legislators on a bill that would allow for permanent fishermen’s markets and would promote locally caught seafood.

“San Diego has an opportunity to establish a Blue Tech Center of Excellence due to our unique confluence of ocean resources, research, industry, military, climate, an educated workforce and an international border,” said City Council President Sherri Lightner. “With the City Council’s action today, we are agreeing to unite efforts through regional collaboration and partnerships with private, public, educational institutions and various technology sectors to further develop sustainable, science-based ocean industries that balance conservation and economic development.” 

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