The sea

The sea and the oceans are in this territory’s DNA. At a time when all eyes are turned to the sea to meet tomorrow’s challenges in all areas (food, energy, environmental, technological, security ...), Brest is proud to hold the leading position in Europe and its rank among its international competitors.

Brest is a remarkable metropolis for the coherence of a complete maritime offer, global: military, logistics, industrial and scientific, a city that represents the centerpiece of France’s maritime future. Its commercial port creates a unique offer for hosting industrial projects in the Marine Renewable Energy sector. It is also remarkable for its living environment, training, the quality and motivation of human resources, the dynamism of its political, economic and associative players. Brest: a city open to the world, creative, where anything is possible!

Frank Bellion

President of the Chamber of Commerce and Metropolitan Industry of Western Brittany

Brest is not only the European Capital of Marine Science and Technology, it is also one of the world's leading cities in this field.

Nothing too surprising about that: you will find here prestigious entities, equipped with advanced equipment and training or employing in their laboratories among the best researchers in the world, all accounting for 35% of French public research. There is of course Ifremer, with an international reputation for its research work on the knowledge of marine environment, but also the European University Institute of the Sea of the University of Western Brittany  (UBO-IUEM), the Center of documentation, research and experimentation on accidental water pollution (CEDRE), the Paul-Emile Victor Polar Institute (IPEV), the Hydrographic and Oceanographic Service of the Navy (SHOM) as well as, the engineering school of advanced technologies (ENSTA Bretagne) and the “Institute Mines Telecom Bretagne Pays de la Loire”, a prominent telecommunication engineering school (IMTA). An actor and public showcase of this excellence, Océanopolis, center of scientific culture and ocean discovery park located at the edge of the harbor of Brest, offers the general public, of all ages, a dive in the heart of marine environments and its ecosystems, through its 76 aquariums.

Research & Development is particularly applied in oceanography (physics, operational, ...), integrated management of the environment and marine resources (oceanic and coastal ecosystems, marine geosciences, biotechnologies, fisheries and aquaculture, ...), underwater and offshore technologies (acoustics, robotics, ...), maritime safety and security, energy resources (marine renewable energies ...), naval design (ships and offshore platforms) ... 

FOCUS : At the forefront of marine renewable energies
> Brest welcomes the national platform dedicated to the research and production of renewable marine energies, France marine energies.
> Naval Group, the only French industrial company present in the four technologies (floating wind turbines, tidal turbines, thermal energy of the seas, wave energy), has set up a research and development incubator in the field of marine renewable energies in Brest.
> Today, on the port of Brest, 36 hectares are under development for the creation of an industrial marine renewable energy sector.

The Brittany-Atlantic Maritime Cluster, a global competitiveness cluster headquartered at the Technopôle Brest-Iroise, is the link between this research ecosystem, the industrial sphere and the financing networks to boost the innovation capacity of companies and enable them to seize development opportunities.

Anchored in Finistère, French fishing department of excellence, representing 25% of the fresh catch spreads throughout the national territory and employs more than 11500 local workers, Local fishing and aquaculture produce very high quality: bass, pollack, scallops, oysters, abalone among others. The rational exploitation of marine resources is receiving a great deal of attention and continues to offer new opportunities, particularly with the development of algae exploitation. Finistère alone accounts for a quarter of European seaweed production (68,000 tons), yet the value of this wealth is far from reaching its full potential. New applications imagined by young companies such as  Cyane or AlgaeNutri are emerging in the well-being field, health and nutritional supplements, particularly due to spirulina.

Historical naval maintenance hub: The presence of industrial players such as  DAMEN and Naval Group makes Brest one of the first French ports for civil and military naval repair.

Moreover, how can Brest and the sea be brought up without mentioning Defense and its 18800 jobs provided by the Navy and National Naval Group. Large defense base for the West, military port, arsenal, Maritime Prefecture, Naval School, headquarters of the Strategic Ocean Force (FOST) ... the sector is at the origin of the development of high level research in electronics, precision instruments, cybersecurity, especially at THALES laboratories ... It is not without reasons that Brest was appointed in 2020 as the headquarter of France Cyber Maritime, the provisionary steering association of the French national coordination centre for maritime-related cybersecurity.

Brest is, in all respects, a maritime place of strategic importance, but its ambitions do not stop there. With this accomplishment, all the participants of maritime excellence in western Brittany joined forces in the service of a joint approach: the  Campus mondial de la mer. Its objective is clear, to make the tip of Brittany one of the world's leading oceans and seas research and valorization development sites as well as creating a platform for a strong maritime economy.

Le Campus Mondial de la Mer

FOCUS : Sea Tech Week
A must-attend event for industry players, Sea Tech Week is a professional event of international stature that shouldn’t be missed by any companies, SMEs or research institutes dedicated to marine science and technology.

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