Papeete, Tahiti – LinkedIn
Marc’s family has been involved in black pearl farming in French Polynesia for 4 decades, and his brother Alexander has seen significant changes in the environment, in just the past 15 years as a pearl farmer. Problems that seem remote to most people, are a reality in the low-lying atolls of the Tuamotu islands, where most of pearl farming takes place. Marc was Minister of Tourism for Tahiti in 2007-2008, and had an opportunity to get an insider’s view on the country’s first industry, which is also very much dependent on a pristine environment, and subject to considerable impacts if the sea level rise predictions prove accurate: closing of airports, potential loss of beaches, intrusion of salt water in groundwater systems, extreme weather events. Marc believes that Tahiti needs to be pro-active about finding adaptation strategies, and in 2016 got in contact with the Seasteading Institute to share his vision of French Polynesia hosting the world’s first sustainable floating islands. As an Ambassador, Marc’s primary role is to to inform local politicians, elected officials, environmental NGOs, local journalists and residents of the amazing potential of sustainable floating islands.
Pascal Erhel Hatuuku
Pascal is of Marquisian descent, but spent his childhood in France and came back to Tahiti over 20 years ago to re-immerse himself in his native culture. He created OATEA in 2001, a consulting firm in Tourism, Environment and Art & Culture. From the creation of a cultural center to the realization of a hiking trail, from a guide-lecturer to vocational training, self-taught and touching everything, Pascal Erhel Hatuuku has been a technical advisor to French Polynesian governments on the themes that are dear to him: Culture, Tourism and Environment. He is also the Project Manager for the Marquesas Unesco project, as well as secretary-general of the Motu Haka cultural federation since 1999 and is an active member of Polynesian associations and NGOs with a heritage character (culture-nature). Pascal was the driving force behind the innovative “Marine Educational Protected Areas”, which started in the Marquesas but are now being exported throughout the world.