During the meeting, Coast Survey’s Tom Loeper, chief of Navigation Services Division’s Coast Pilot branch and Great Lakes navigation manager, was reappointed as the secretary for the working group, a position he has held for 2 years. Two other working group members from the United States also attended the meeting, Briana Sullivan from the University of New Hampshire, and Mike Kushla from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.
While in Monaco, the NIPWG had the opportunity to visit the training ship Kojima of Japan Coast Guard moored at Port Hercule in Monaco Harbor. While onboard the Kojima, Robert Ward, President of the IHO, spoke about the importance of hydrography worldwide and of the long relationship between the IHO and the Grimaldi family of Monaco, dating back nearly 100 years. Representing the Grimaldi family at the event was His Serene Highness Prince Albert of Monaco. To conclude the ceremony, crew members of the Kojima demonstrated a mock sword fight and the traditional method of making rice cakes.
NIPWG meets regularly to develop and maintain guidance, standards, and other supplemental information for charts, much like U.S. Coast Pilot. This information is typically presented as an overlay for electronic navigational charts and are often used for voyage planning by the mariner.
Formerly the Standardization of Nautical Publications Working Group, NIPWG was established by the Hydrographic Services and Standards Committee as part of a restructuring effort to change its focus from paper-based to digital products and services.