A warm kaselehlie, and welcome to Partnership for the Environmental Protection of the Pacific, Inc., or PePP, a Micronesian corporation. Thank you for your interest in protecting the Pacific Ocean and promoting the welfare of Pacific Islanders.
PePP seeks to assist the people of the Pacific in better managing their environmental resources and in more robustly defending their interests in creative new and important ways. PePP's first projects are ambitious. Read more about our three Signature Projects under the "Our Focus" Tab, but, in brief, they're designed to bring full energy independence, broader health care service, and food security to Pacific Islanders.
PePP's Board of Directors (see Tab titled "Our Team") is an all-star cast of experienced Pacific hands with diverse talents and backgrounds. PePP plans to broaden the Board by incrementally adding reputable community leaders and qualified individuals nominated by our major funding partners. All of our leadership is serving on a pro bono basis, which translates into low administrative overhead. Our focus is on effectiveness, sustainability, and value, in service to the people of the Pacific. We're united by our love of the Pacific and our commitment to helping Pacific Islanders surmount the many serious environmental challenges they face.
PePP is working with other entities to help Pacific Island countries better position themselves in order to avail of potential new funding that may soon become available, such as through the
Pacific Deterrence Initiatiive and the BLUE Pacific Act.
One of those other entities is The Stevenson Group (TSG), a Washington DC-based consultancy specializing in international economic development and security. TSG was founded by Amb. C. Steven McGann. Amb. McGann also sẻrved on PePP's ỏriginal board of directors. I regret to announce that he passed away on May 26 at the age of 71. He was one of my closest friends and finest mentors. He devoted much of his career to advancing the interests of Pacific Islanders.
FSM Pres. David Panuelo's last State of the Nation Address in January cited several PePP-inspired advances on important issues. On maritime Monitoring, Control, and Surveillance issues, Panuelo noted the arrival soon in Kolonia of the second Guardian-class vessel from Australia's Pacific Patrol Boat program and the addition of one vessel from Japan for each of the FSM's four states. What is still needed are three ocean-capable patrol vessels operated according to PePP's NAVATARS concept. Panuelo also announced a massive increase in spending on Technical and Vocational Education and Training, thanks to $17.7 million provided by the World Bank, to include construction of a TVET school at the former PATS site in Pohnpei. While this program falls well short of PePP's vision for PATS, it is a major step in the right direction. Finally, Panuelo announced support from the Japan Mining Action Services and Australia enabling mitigation teams to address the leaking petrand lubricants from WWII wrecks in Chuuk Lagoon. PePP seeks a stronger, more comprehensive and institutional approach to salvaging wrecks and disposing of unexploded ordnance across the Pacific, but we're heartened by this long-advocated initiative.
We remain keen to identify additional talent for our Board. We invite any interested party to contact us.
Wishing you PePP in abundance.
Richard K. Pruett