Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

At the third Ocean Conference preparatory meeting, organizations and member states continued to bring attention to the issues they desired to be mentioned in the call for action. The biggest topics mentioned included marine pollution and ocean acidification, IUU (illegal, unreported, and unregulated), fishing, and marine conservation.

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The ocean plays a crucial part in the development and sustainability of whole communities. The ocean and its resources are the foundation of livelihoods, economies, and cultures – all of which are threatened by marine pollution and ocean acidification. With 80% of marine pollution coming from land resources, many organizations and member states urged for the use of technologies that can mitigate the action of pollution. Growing CO2 levels in the ocean have become visible with the increase of sea levels, and if left unattended, acidification will increase. As the representative of Venezuela warned, “We have become poison of the ocean. We can transform this by becoming the medicine.”

On the practice of fishing, organizations and member states all addressed the issue of IUU fishing. IUU fishing is prominent on the high seas where fishers can evade enhanced security and national jurisdictions. Overfishing could lead to the extinction of various species the destruction of ecosystems. To protect species, marine conservation plays a key role. Protecting and preserving marine environments is vital to maintain resources and save organisms in the ocean.

To address every issue, organizations and member states urged for the cooperation of the private sector and civil society. They also highlighted the importance of addressing other SDGs to achieve SDG 14. Setting major areas of focus can help build more resilient oceans and secure the health and wellbeing of society.

Meeting: Preparatory Meeting for the United Nations Conference to Support the Implementation of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

Date/Location: Thursday, February 16, 2017; 10:00 to 13:00; Conference Room 4

Speakers: Mr. Alvaro Mendonya Moura, Permanent Representative of Portugal; Mr. Burhan Gafoor, Permanent Representative of Singapore; Representative of World Oceans Council; Representative of Ocean Policy Research Institute; Representative of WWF; Representative of Bangladesh; Representative of Micronesia; Representative of Fiji; Representative of Sri Lanka; Representative of Tuvalu; Representative of Thailand; Representative of Solomon Islands; Representative of Indonesia; Representative of Vietnam; Representative of Venezuela; Representative of Greece; Representative of Ghana; Representative of Palau; Representative of Marshall Islands; Representative of Nepal; Representative of Nigeria; Representative of Italy; Representative of Paraguay; Representative of Chile; Representative of Kenya; Representative of Honduras; Representative of Belgium; Representative of Iceland; Representative of Monaco; Representative of Papua New Guinea; Representative of the Philippines; Representative of International Seabed Authority; Representative of International Chamber of Commerce; Representative of the International Renewable Energy Agency; Representative of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development; Representative of the World Bank; Representative of  FAO; Representative of ILO; Representative of UNESCO; Secretariat of the Convention on biological diversity; Representative of UNEP; Representative of UNDP; Representative of the World Animal Protection; Representative of the Monterrey Bay Aquarium; Representative of the High Seas Alliance; Representative of Conservation International; Representative of the Ocean Frontier Institute

Written By: Leticia Murillo, WIT Representative

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