Ocean Action Hub

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2nd UN OCEAN CONFERENCE

The ocean covers 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, is the planet's largest biosphere, and home to up to 80 percent of all life in the world.

It generates 50 percent of the oxygen we need, absorbs 25 percent of all carbon dioxide emissions and captures 90 percent of the additional heat generated from those emissions. It is not just ‘the lungs of the planet’ but also its largest carbon sink - a vital buffer against the impacts of climate change.

It nurtures unimaginable biodiversity and produces food, jobs, mineral and energy resources needed for life on the planet to survive and thrive. There is a great deal we still do not know about the ocean but there are many reasons why we need to manage it sustainability - as set out in the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 14: Life Below Water.

The science is clear – the ocean is facing unprecedent threats as a result of human activities. Its health and ability to sustain life will only get worse as the world population grows and human activities increase. If we want to address some of the most defining issues of our time such as climate change, food insecurity, diseases and pandemics, diminishing biodiversity, economic inequality and even conflicts and strife, we must act now to protect the state of our ocean.

The United Nations Ocean Conference

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Scaling up Ocean Action Based on Science and Innovation for the Implementation of Goal 14: Stocktaking, Partnerships and Solutions 

The Ocean Conference, co-hosted by the Governments of Kenya and Portugal, comes at a critical time as the world is strengthening its efforts to mobilize, create and drive solutions to realize the 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

As one of the first milestones of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ newly launched Decade of Action for the Sustainable Development Goals, the Conference will propel much needed science-based innovative solutions aimed at starting a new chapter of global ocean action.

Solutions for a sustainably managed ocean involves green technology and innovative uses of marine resources. It also includes addressing the threats to health, ecology, economy and governance of the ocean - acidification, marine litter and pollution, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, and the loss of habitats and biodiversity.

Leadership

The Governments of Kenya and Portugal will co-host the Ocean Conference.

Liu Zhenmin, United Nations Under-Secretary-General of Economic and Social Affairs, will serve as the Secretary-General of the Conference, and Miguel de Serpa Soares, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs, will serve as the Special Adviser to the Presidents of the Ocean Conference on the ocean and legal matters.

Ambassador Peter Thomson, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean

In 2017, the United Nations Secretary-General Guterres appointed Ambassador Peter Thomson of Fiji as his Special Envoy for the Ocean, aiming at galvanizing concerted efforts to follow up on the outcomes of the 2017 United Nations Ocean Conference, maintaining the momentum for action to conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.

TO LEARN MORE, VISIT: https://oceanconference.un.org/

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Update on the 2020 UN Ocean Conference

8 Apr 2020 - A draft General Assembly decision to postpone the Conference has been submitted to the President of the UN General Assembly

8 Apr 2020 - A draft General Assembly decision to postpone the Conference has been submitted to the President of the UN General Assembly

and is under silence procedure until 3 p.m. EDT on Monday, 13 April. Full document: https://un.org/pga/74/2020/04/07/un-ocean-conference-3/…

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Postponement of UN Ocean Conference under consideration

20 Mar 2020 - In light of the COVID19 pandemic, co-hosts Portugal and Kenya are jointly consulting with the United Nations on the postponement of the 2020 UN Ocean Conference.

20 Mar 2020 - In light of the COVID19 pandemic, co-hosts Portugal and Kenya are jointly consulting with the United Nations on the postponement of the 2020 UN Ocean Conference. For updates see: https://www.un.org/en/conferences/ocean2020

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This week preparations kick off for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference

4 Feb 2020 - THIS WEEK: Tues 4 - Weds 5 Feb preparations kick off for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference everything you need to know here:

4 Feb 2020 - THIS WEEK: Tues 4 - Weds 5 Feb preparations kick off for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference everything you need to know here:

https://un.org/en/conferences/ocean2020/preparation

In anticipation of the 2020 United Nations Ocean Conference, The General Assembly through resolution 73/292 decided to convene a two-day preparatory meeting from 4-5 February 2020 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

In December 2019, the President of the General Assembly appointed, in line with the resolution, H.E. Ms. Ngedikes Olai Uludong, Permanent Representative of Palau, and H.E. Mr. Martin Bille Hermann, Permanent Representative of Denmark, as the co-facilitators to oversee the preparatory process.

As also mandated in resolution 73/292 the Secretary-General has prepared a background note, including a proposal for themes of the interactive dialogues for the Conference, to be considered by the preparatory meeting to be held at United Nations Headquarters in New York. The co-facilitators will guide the consideration of the themes for the interactive dialogues and the elements for a brief, concise, action-oriented and agreed intergovernmental declaration. A set of proposed questions will be circulated to that end.

Background note: https://www.un.org/sites/un2.un.org/files/a_74_630_e.pdf

E-consultation: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSchbVs3IAk5v1B3namvTIz87F9dT_H29LcCzwJByjuzVqD4IA/viewform

This form is intended to collect inputs from non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, academic institutions, the scientific community, the private sector, philanthropic organizations, major groups and other stakeholders on elements for the declaration as well as the themes for the interactive dialogues for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference.

This e-consultation form is being set up to collect inputs from non-governmental organizations, civil society organizations, academic institutions, the scientific community, the private sector, philanthropic organizations, major groups and other stakeholders on elements for the declaration as well as the themes for the interactive dialogues for the 2020 UN Ocean Conference.



DEADLINE TO SUBMIT INPUTS: 10 February 2020.

 

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Special accreditation for the 2020 UN #OceanConference and its preparatory meeting is now open!

15 Oct 2019 - Deadline: 15 November.

15 Oct 2019 - Deadline: 15 November. Learn more here: oceanconference.un.org/#participate

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Diving into the blue economy

7 Jan 2019 - Can humans use the ocean as a tool for lifting people out of poverty, all the while protecting its valuable ecosystems?

7 Jan 2019 - Can humans use the ocean as a tool for lifting people out of poverty, all the while protecting its valuable ecosystems? Certainly, say proponents of the growing sustainable blue economy movement. The first-ever Sustainable Blue Economy Conference, held in Kenya in November 2018, brought together thousands of ocean experts and activists to discuss how to sustainably use our ocean.

The concept is gaining momentum , including at the highest levels of decision making. In September, 12 heads of state from around the world and the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean, Peter Thomson, launched the High-level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy to catalyse bold solutions for ocean health and wealth. We asked Madhushree Chatterjee, Chief of the Natural Resources and Interlinkages Branch of UN DESA’s Division for Sustainable Development Goals to give us her impressions of this growing movement.

What do we mean by a “blue economy”?

“The blue economy comprises a range of economic sectors and related policies that together determine whether the use of ocean resources is sustainable. An important challenge of the blue economy is to understand and better manage the many aspects of oceanic sustainability, ranging from sustainable fisheries to ecosystem health to preventing pollution. Secondly, the blue economy challenges us to realize that the sustainable management of ocean resources will require collaboration across borders and sectors through a variety of partnerships, and on a scale that has not been previously achieved. This is a tall order, particularly for Small Island Developing States (SIDS) and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) who face significant limitations.”

How can building a blue economy help us achieve the SDGs?

“The blue economy concept seeks to promote economic growth, social inclusion and preservation or improvement of livelihoods while at the same time ensuring environmental sustainability—all issues integral to the 2030 Agenda. So, to build a blue economy, we will need to put sustainability at its centre. This will require careful attention to all decisions and their cross‑sectoral implications. We will need to ensure that policies do not undermine each other and that interlinkages are leveraged for the benefit of people, planet and prosperity.”

CONTINUE READING ONLINE HERE: https://www.un.org/development/desa/undesavoice/expert-voices/2019/01/43483.html

SOURCE: UN DESA 'Expert Voices', January 2019

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SIDS Times Newsletter, September 2017

The September 2017 edition is dedicated exclusively to Ocean related matters following the UN Ocean Conference.

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Help the Secretariat of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development visualize the world’s action to #SaveOurOcean

Calling all data visualizations specialists! This is an opportunity to showcase your skills to the international community in New York. Deadline: 10 July 2017

Data visualizations help make large amounts of data more readily accessible and understandable by turning numbers, letters and connections into aesthetically pleasing visuals, making it easy to recognize patterns, trends and to identify exceptions.

The Secretariat of the High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) is offering a unique opportunity to data visualizations specialists to showcase and present their skills to the international community by analyzing and visualizing data from the 1,380 voluntary commitments that were announced in the lead-up, and during, The Ocean Conference, held on 5-9 June 2017 at United Nations Headquarters, New York.

The visualization from the selected winner will be featured during the HLPF at the Partnership Exchange special event, which takes place at the UN headquarters on 17 July 2017.

Deadline: 10 July 2017

More information available at: https://oceanconference.un.org/commitments/#visual

See also the flyer attached here: Data Competition Voluntary Commitments.pdf

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Final Report of the Ocean Conference - now online

16 Jun 2017 - The Report of the United Nations Ocean Conference is now available (in its the advance unedited version) on the Ocean Conference website at: https://oceanconference.un.org

16 Jun 2017 - The Report of 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, is now available (in its the advance unedited version) on the Ocean Conference website at: https://oceanconference.un.org/ and directly at: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/content/documents/15662FINAL_15_June_2017_Report_Goal_14.pdf

As the modalities resolution of the Ocean Conference A/RES/70/303 decided that "the Conference shall contribute to the follow-up and review process of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by providing an input to the high-level political forum on sustainable development", the report of the Ocean Conference will be one of the background documents for the High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) 2017, to be held on 10-19 July 2017 at UN Headquarters in New York. Hence, the above report is also available on the website of HLPF at: https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/hlpf

The central registry of voluntary commitments from the Ocean Conference is also available on the Conference website at: https://oceanconference.un.org/commitments

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SDG Advocate Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden joins global effort to save our ocean

12 June 2017 - “Do what you can, do it wisely, and most importantly do it now. A healthy ocean is not a luxury item. It is a necessity for survival.

12 June 2017 - “Do what you can, do it wisely, and most importantly do it now. A healthy ocean is not a luxury item. It is a necessity for survival. And taking care of the ocean means taking care of ourselves,” Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden said, as she addressed the Stockholm Resilience Centre event on “Engaging the private sector in SDG 14” on 9 June, taking place during the Ocean Conference at UN Headquarters in New York.

One of 17 Sustainable Development Goals Advocates, the Crown Princess joined the international community during the Conference week to show her dedication and commitment to help save our ocean.

Addressing the side event aimed at presenting and discussing the efforts by companies in SeaBOS (Seafood Business for Ocean Stewardship), a science-based sustainability initiative involving nine of the world’s largest seafood companies, Crown Princess Victoria spoke passionately about the critical state of our ocean.

“Have you ever experienced a forest fire?,” she asked the well-attended auditorium, referring to one of the largest forest fires that Sweden experienced a few years ago. “The roaring flames. The massive heat. The smoke. It is a dramatic experience – even frightening,” she said.

“Looking out at the sea, on the other hand, is a very different experience,” she continued describing a stunning, peaceful view. “But the beautiful surface is not telling the whole truth. Overfishing, global warming and pollution are destroying the ocean. Not with flames and smoke, like a fire. But silently, invisibly, deadly,” the Crown Princess said.

“All alarm bells are ringing: We are coming dangerously close to fatal tipping points,” she said, noting the critical role that the ocean plays for life on earth. She also described the role of the seafood industry, stressing that all food that we get from the ocean needs to be produced in a sustainable way.

Crown Princess Victoria praised the SeaBOS initiative aimed towards sustainable seafood action by connecting the global seafood business to science; wild capture fisheries to aquaculture; and European and North American companies to Asian companies. SeaBOS is also one of the 1,328 voluntary commitments made in connection with the Ocean Conference.

Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden, Isabella Lövin also commended the initiative and looked back on a successful week and Ocean Conference, an event for which Sweden has held the co-presidency together with Fiji.

“When we discuss climate change, it is difficult to see it in front of you, but for the degradation of the ocean, we can see it in front of us,” Ms. Lövin said. “We feel it in our hearts that this is not tolerable anymore,” she said, also praising the fact that the Conference had raised our awareness on plastic litter. Ms. Lövin said we had let “the genie out of the bottle”, and that “we will not be able to put it back again”.

CONTINUE READING: https://www.un.org/development/desa/en/news/sustainable/crown-princess-v...

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