Not Just A Science Experiment
Promoting ocean science policy and management for sustainable development is the core focus of the Ocean Decade. In the next few years, ocean stakeholders worldwide will gather behind a common framework that will ensure ocean science can fully support countries in creating improved conditions for the sustainable development of the ocean.
The role of science is fundamental if we are to save our oceans. The marine realm is the largest component of the Earth’s system that stabilizes climate and supports life on Earth and human well-being but the ocean is now seriously degraded, with changes and losses in the structure, function and benefits of marine systems. Adaptation strategies and science-informed policy responses to global change are urgently needed. Our civilization needs a clean, resilient, productive, safe, well-observed, documented and predicted ocean.
For this reason, the United Nations has proclaimed a Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021–2030) to support efforts to reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health. The Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO has been tasked by the UN General Assembly to work with all interested stakeholders to design a Decade of ocean science that will help us deliver “the ocean we need for the future we want”.
This work is now in progress and we are currently in the preparatory phase of 2018/2019 where the tremendous goodwill shown by the global community to protect the world’s oceans needs to be summarized. The priority issues for program development, knowledge gaps on how to address societal goals and recommended activities for the way forward are now available.
The next steps will be the Implementation Plan for the Decade which includes different strategic plans to define key issues and priority scientific questions of high relevance…