The FRV Project is launched in Hobart by Senator Carr on 7 August 2009.
“Our (the Government’s) answer is a purpose-built, state-of-the-art research vessel that will be a more than worthy as a successor to the great work that the Southern Surveyor is undertaking.
That new vessel will meetAustralia’s needs for years to come. As I say, it will arguably be the most significant marine research investment ever made in this country. It is the sort of chance you get only once in a generation. The new vessel will more than doubleAustralia’s research capabilities when it joins the national fleet in 2012.
It will support oceanographic, climate, geoscience, fisheries, ecosystem and multidisciplinary research. It will be able to handle all conditions – from the tropics to the ice edge. It will accommodate thirty to forty-five scientists and support staff on any one voyage, which compares with current capacity of fifteen scientists and support staff on Southern Surveyor.
Those scientists will come from institutions all around the country and all around the world.The vessel will enable Australia to participate in international collaborations and to train our brightest students in the latest research techniques.
It will support the widest variety of projects, which will be chosen for their scientific quality and their potential benefit to this nation and the rest of the world. And if we don’t understand the oceans, we can’t understand the climate or its influence onAustralia’s economy and way of life. If we can’t freely explore the sea around us, we will never understand the biological and geological wealth it contains. Only 12 per cent ofAustralia’s ocean territory has been mapped. We’re only beginning to understand its potential.
It will be a couple of years before we get our new National Marine National Facility – which gives you plenty of time to think about what that experiment is going to be. In the meantime, the Government will ensure that the Southern Surveyor can spend up to 180 days a year at sea until the replacement vessel is launched.
It is an honour to formally inaugurate the Marine National Facility Future Research Vessel Project here this morning.
This is a great day for Hobart, which will be home to the new vessel, just as it is to Southern Surveyor.
It’s a great day for Australian science.
And it is a great day for every Australian who cares about our future as a maritime nation.”