According to the Forum, the recent developments that provide a more hopeful future are:
- Indonesian Government and Partners make efforts to tackle plastic pollution:
The Indonesian Government recently began co-operations with the Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP) to take an innovative and data-driven approach to solving the ocean plastic crisis. The GPAP team in Jakarta is collecting local management waste data and constructs a model that evaluates solutions, as overpackaging, substituting materials, creating new recyclable plastics, increasing recycling rates and improving waste collection rates.
- Electric Ferries Help Decarbonize Maritime Transport
A striking example of 'green' shipping is Norway's first all-electric ferry, the Ampere, which managed -in two years of operation- to decrease carbon dioxide emissions by 95% and reduced operating costs by 80%.
- A Turning Point for Africa in the Fight Against Illegal Fishing
The South African region loses about $500 million per year through illegal fishing. Namibia recently became the seventh signatory to a charter establishing the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Monitoring, Control and Surveillance Coordination Centre.
- Indonesia Creates Three Marine Protected Areas Within Coral Triangle
In April 2019, the Indonesian government established three new marine protected areas within the Coral Triangle, a region home to the highest diversity of corals and reef fishes anywhere on the planet. The three new zones will span 226 square kilometers (87 square miles). Only traditional and small-scale fishers using sustainable fishing equipment will be permitted to operate there. Indonesia has committed to set aside 200,000 square kilometers (77,200 square miles) of its territorial waters for conservation by 2020, and so far has achieved about 96 percent of this target.
- Blue COP
Blue COP referring to COP24, which was conducted in December 2018, in Katowice Poland, focused on climate action and protection of the oceans. The meeting noted the importance of mitigatinf global temperature rise to 1.5-2 degrees C (2.7-3.6 degrees F), the targets set out in the Paris Agreement on climate change, is essential for preserving the vibrancy of ocean life. Ocean action also can help mitigate climate change, improve the resilience of coastal communities and conserve marine ecosystems.
As Peter Thomson, UN Special Envoy for the Ocean commented
They are calling the 25th Conference of the Parties 'The Blue COP'—a recognition that the oceans and the climate are inseparable. It's all one ecosystem.
- Heads of Government Unite for the Ocean
Global leaders partnered and developed the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy group which focuses on enhancing the way we are treating the ocean. The panel aims to present innovations in governance, technology and investment. According to World Economic Forum, the panel is the only ocean policy body that was developed by global leaders, to trigger, amplify and accelerate action for ocean protection and production. The panel consists of leaders from Australia, Canada, Chile, Fiji, Ghana, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Namibia, Norway, Palau and Portugal.
Concluding, the World Economic Forum provides a positive look for the future, highlighting that 2020 has the potential to become an 'ocean super year', consisting of meetings and projects in favour of ocean protection ans sustainability such as the IUCN World Conservation Congress (France), Our Ocean 2020 (Palau) and the 15th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (China).
The ocean continues to rise on the international agenda, resulting in major public and private sector commitments. How long this will last is hard to say—but while 70% of the planet is being given such attention, we need to make the most of it and transform hope into reality.
... the World Economic Forum concluded.