28 Jan 2020 - OECD - “The World’s Oceans Are in Trouble. And So Are Humans, Warns U.N. Report” – a blaring headline in Time Magazine just after the IPCC published their landmark report Oceans and the Cryosphere in September 2019. It highlights what scientists and NGOs have been shouting from the rooftops for years: human activity has put the global ocean in a dire state and by doing so is endangering planetary life as we know it. But how has it come this far? In addition to producing over half of the oxygen we breathe, being the largest carbon sink on the planet and a haven for biodiversity, a healthy ocean is a source of economic livelihoods for billions of people. The value of global ocean assets is estimated at over USD 24 trillion making it the 7th largest economy in the world in GDP terms. Due to its integral role in the global financial and environmental ecosystems, the ocean is high on the international policy agenda and its importance continues to grow. The global ‘Blue Economy’ is expected to expand at twice the rate of the mainstream economy until 2030, and already contributes USD 2.5 trillion a year in economic output.
However, the Blue Economy relies on healthy ocean ecosystems for the abundance of resources that generate these incomes, and its future looks bleak. For decades, harmful approaches have ranged from industrial fishing, depleting fish populations and destroying habitats, to using the ocean as a dumping ground for chemical and plastic waste. These approaches coupled with the damaging effects of climate change, have put the long-term survival of the ocean, and therefore its investment potential, at risk. Yet, we need significantly more sustainable ‘blue’ investment to move from current destructive approaches to ocean assets, to a climate-secure and prosperous Blue Economy.
CONTINUE READING ONLINE HERE: https://oecd-development-matters.org/2020/01/27/why-should-investors-care-about-ocean-health/