Telcos must step up to make new cable work

Saturday June 22, 2019 Written by Published in Technology

Concerns have been raised about the impacts of a new submarine internet cable on fishing and the marine environment.

 

Government-owned Avaroa Cable Ltd held four consultation meeting in Rarotonga and Aitutaki.

Avaroa is responsible for bringing the new Manatua Cable (which runs from Samoa to French Polynesia) ashore in the Cook Islands.

The so-called “Trans-Polynesian Information Superhighway” will give the two most populous islands a direct connection to the world, but the rest of the Cook Islands will still rely on satellite.

More than 120 Cook Islanders offered “tough and sustained questioning” late into the night, Avaroa said.

Marine scientist Luke Gowing, the company’s environmental adviser, said he had worked on many cable projects in the Pacific and was “confident that the minor environmental impacts” could be mitigated.

The cable will come ashore in Rutaki Village on the south side of Rarotonga.

Glassie Matata, Tiotekai Mataiapo for the village, said they very much supported the project.

And on Aitutaiki ariki Tutai o Pore said: “This project isn’t just about what our community needs now, it’s about the future of our children and our children’s children.”           

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