This text was taken from the International Institute for Environment and Development.
“What must be done to achieve an inclusive blue economy where everyone shares fairly in the benefits the ocean brings, and neither marine life nor people are negatively affected by policies or practice?
Over the course of a day and a half, we invite you to join us in considering this question. We want to hear about what is happening already, share ideas, and commit to make change happen.Whether you are an ocean specialist in civil society or a multilateral organisation, from a fisheries association, government, business, or a research or legal institution, let’s come together to discuss what we can do.
The ocean brings many benefits: it plays a part in regulating our climate, it is a rich source of food and other natural resources. But in areas beyond national jurisdiction it is a free-for-all. There is no governance system and widespread misuse of an ocean that belongs to everyone. We could all play a role in being stewards of the high seas – what is needed to make that possible?
How does this connect to sustainable management of the ocean within a nation’s jurisdiction? What fiscal policies can be developed and implemented through tools such as taxes, fees and subsidies? We want policies that deliver a positive outcome for the environment and people, particularly those involved in the small-scale fishing sector.
And if new policies are needed and business practice must change, how can we gather and use data in a convincing and meaningful way to help government and the private sector to understand the value of the small-scale fishing sector? Without that understanding both people and the environment may suffer and opportunities for a sustainable life below water and on land will be missed.
- Prof Rashid Sumaila, Director, Fisheries Economics Research Unit, University of British Columbia
- Editrudith Lukanga, Executive director, Environment Management and Economic Development Organization (EMEDO), Tanzania; Secretary general, African Women Fish Processors and Traders Network (AWFishNet)
- Dr Ekaterina Popova, National Oceanography Centre, University of Southampton
- Prof William Cheung, Director (Science), NF-UBC Nereus Program; Principal Investigator, Changing Ocean Research Unit, University of British Columbia
- Ambassador Eden Charles, former ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago to the UN; former chair of preparatory committee meetings of BBNJ
- Mitchell Lay, Program Coordinator, Caribbean Network of Fisherfolk Organisations”
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