ocean conservation tagged posts

Protect our ocean ‘to solve challenges of century’

Protecting the ocean has a triple whammy effect, safeguarding climate, food and biodiversity, according to new research. A global map compiled by international scientists pinpoints priority places for action to maximise benefits for people and nature. Currently, only 7% of the ocean is protected. A pledge to protect at least 30% by 2030 is gathering momentum ahead of this year’s key UN biodiversity summit.

The study, published in the scientific journal Nature, sets a framework for prioritising areas of the ocean for protection.

The ocean covers 70% of the Earth, yet its importance for solving the challenges of our time has been overlooked, said study researcher Prof Boris Worm of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

“The benefits are clear,” he said...

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The Ultramarine Ocean Summit Aims To Promote Ocean Conservation

Next week, scientists, policymakers, entrepreneurs, and artists will gather at Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands – both in-person and virtually – to kick-off the annual Ultramarine Ocean Summit. The event boasts an impressive line-up, including Mission Blue founder Sylvia Earle, ocean explorer Fabien Cousteau, conservationist and world-renowned wildlife photographer Cristina Mittermeier, and actress and environmental activist Jane Fonda. 

The virtual portion of the event, put on by nonprofits Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA) and Oceanic Global, is available for the public to enjoy. Each of the three-days of virtual programming will include a theme: plastic pollution, protecting marine life, and the regenerative ocean economy.

Day 1 – February 3, 2021: Tackling Plastic ...

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Credit Suisse raises $212m for ‘world’s first’ ocean health impact fund

The businesses claim that the ‘Ocean Engagement Fund’ is the first impact fund of its kind, in that it is solely dedicated to and fully aligned with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14: Life Below Water. The Goal includes targets to address issues such as overfishing, marine pollution and acidification, and to boost conservation and restoration.

Between 30 and 50 businesses will be backed by the fund. Non-profit The Ocean Foundation will advise Credit Suisse and Rockefeller Asset Management on which companies to include in the portfolio. It will also provide best-practice learnings on engaging with portfolio businesses to steer them away from practices which harm the oceans, going beyond ‘doing less bad’ and achieving a net-positive impact on marine habitats.

A list of pot...

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Economic Benefits of Protecting 30% of Planet’s Land and Ocean Outweigh the Costs at Least 5-to-1

Artic sea Ice

In the most comprehensive report to date on the economic implications of protecting nature, over 100 economists and scientists find that the global economy would benefit from the establishment of far more protected areas on land and at sea than exist today. The report considers various scenarios of protecting at least 30% of the world’s land and ocean to find that the benefits outweigh the costs by a ratio of at least 5-to-1. The report offers new evidence that the nature conservation sector drives economic growth, delivers key non-monetary benefits and is a net contributor to a resilient global economy.

The findings follow growing scientific evidence that at least 30% of the planet’s land and ocean must be protected to address the alarming collapse of the natural world, which now thre...

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Our Climate and Ocean in Crisis

Starfish on a coral reef in Bali, Indonesia

Climate change is killing the ocean. The ocean has absorbed 90 percent of Earth’s heat over the last 50 years. Warmer waters are causing fish and other species to flee for cooler areas and fundamental and sudden shifts in the ocean ecosystem. The ocean also has absorbed more than a quarter of the carbon dioxide produced by fossil fuels, causing a 30 percent increase in ocean acidity since the Industrial Revolution and making it harder for oysters, scallops, and other shellfish to grow their protective shells.

Climate change has harmed our ocean, but our ocean can still help turn the tide.

Today’s report from the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis highlights the need to protect and restore U.S...

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We need to prioritize ocean conservation before it’s too late

A coral reef impacted by a severe bleaching event

There are many challenges that are top-of-mind when we think about ocean conservation. And science is perhaps the most crucial part of decoding these challenges. It underlies a lot of the innovation we need to save the ocean. However, while science underlies many of these solutions, scientists aren’t the only perspectives we need. From storytellers like filmmakers to event planners and educators, we very much need multiple perspectives to spurn effective solutions.

EarthX, “the world’s largest environmental conference and film festival,” ran a virtual event just last week that embodies this principle. The event, in partnership with National Geographic, acknowledges the importance of scientific viewpoints, inviting marine biologist and former NOAA Chief Scientist Sylvia Earle.

But ...

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Coronavirus lockdown giving oceans much-needed breathing space

sunset over the ocean surface

The coronavirus lockdown is giving the world’s oceans much-needed breathing space, let’s hope we don’t go back to bad habits when it ends, writes the Ocean Conservation Trust. In just a few months, millions of people have been asked to quarantine and whole countries have been locked down to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Around the world, events are being cancelled and travel plans dropped. A growing number of universities, schools and workplaces have closed, and workers are working from home if they can.

This pandemic is shutting down industrial activity on a massive scale.

All of this might feel rather bleak, but there is some good news coming out of the scientific community, which is reporting positive environmental outcomes of the lockdowns that are now being enforced gl...

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Our oceans are suffering, but we can rebuild marine life

Indonesia coral

It’s not too late to rescue global marine life, according to a study outlining the steps needed for marine ecosystems to recover from damage by 2050. University of Queensland scientist Professor Catherine Lovelock said the study found many components of marine ecosystems could be rebuilt if we try harder to address the causes of their decline.

“People depend on the oceans and coastal ecosystems as a source of food, livelihoods, carbon capture and, thanks to coral reefs, mangroves and other coastal ecosystems, for protection from storms,” Professor Lovelock said.

“But people are having enormous impacts globally and it’s time to do what we must to ensure our oceans are healthy and vibrant for generations to come.”

The research revealed many examples of recovery of marine populations, habita...

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What will it cost to save the earth’s oceans?

Underwater coral scene

In 2015, 193 countries agreed on 17 global objectives for ending poverty and protecting the environment by 2030. These Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) included SDG 14, to “conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.”

A new study by two former diplomats with the CONOW Competence Centre for International Relations published in the journal Marine Policy estimates that to hit the targets needed to achieve this SDG the world must spend $175 billion per year.

Reducing marine pollution will take more than half the money needed, according to the paper. At over $90 billion, that cost includes programs to clean up ocean trash, better manage waste and improve wastewater treatment plants. It also means investing in research on biodegradable plas...

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A plan to save Earth’s oceans

Orona Island, an uninhabited island in the Phoenix Islands, Kiribati.

At least 26 per cent of our oceans need urgent conservation attention to preserve Earth’s marine biodiversity, a University of Queensland-led international study has found. Dr Kendall Jones said the international community needed to rapidly increase marine conservation efforts to maintain the health of the world’s oceans.

“Preserving a portion of habitat for all marine species would require 8.5 million square kilometres of new conservation areas,” Dr Jones said.

“Currently one-third of all marine species have less than 10 per cent of their range covered by protected areas.

“Conserving the areas we’ve identified in our study would give all marine species a reasonable amount of space to live free from human impacts like fishing, commercial shipping or pesticide runoff.”

The authors mapped m...

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