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Statement from Friends of Ocean Action: |01 February 2022

‘2022 can be the year world halts decline in ocean health’


The group ‘Friends of the Ocean Action’ has issued a statement calling on leaders to implement the UN SDG14 and halt the decline in the ocean's health.

This statement has also been signed by former President Danny Faure who is also a member of Friends of the Ocean Action.

The full statement reads:

“This year, the global community has an unprecedented opportunity to take

transformational ocean action. As members of Friends of Ocean Action, we call on leaders worldwide to seize this moment in history and join the international consensus necessary to ensure a healthy ocean for generations to come.

“We strongly believe humanity’s best hope of reversing the decline in ocean health is to comprehensively implement the Sustainable Development Goal for the ocean (SDG14), which is integral to the universally agreed 2030 Agenda. Action is needed in areas ranging from pollution and habitat destruction to overfishing and the harmful effects of greenhouse gas emissions.

Multilateral meetings in 2022 at which international commitment will lead directly to achieving SDG14 include:

– World Trade Organisation Ministerial Conference (MC12) – removal of harmful fisheries subsidies;

– United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA5) – initiation of negotiations for an international treaty to stop plastic pollution;

– Intergovernmental Conference on Marine Biodiversity Beyond Areas of National

Jurisdiction (BBNJ) – conclusion of a robust treaty for governance of the high seas;

– Convention on Biological Diversity Conference of the Parties (CBD COP15) – 30x30 planetary protection;

– UN Ocean Conference – innovation, solutions, science and partnerships;

– UN Framework Convention on Climate Change Conference of the Parties

(UNFCCC COP27) – climate mitigation, adaptation and finance.

“These critical ocean gatherings and more – whether in person or virtual – will richly augment the chances of making 2022 the year humanity stopped the decline of the ocean’s health.

“This year is also the International Year of Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture. Last year the UN launched its Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development and the Decade on Ecosystem Restoration to support and advance the realisation of the 2030 Agenda.

“An outcome of last year’s COP26 climate conference was to build ocean considerations into the UNFCCC’s ongoing work, which is expected to lead to solid progress with further negotiations in mid-June to address issues such as ocean warming and acidification. These in turn will improve the ocean’s health and secure its unique capacity to sequester carbon.

“It is vital for the international community not to squander the unparalleled opportunities presented by this confluence of attention on the need for decisive ocean action.

“From climate change to biodiversity loss to the decline of the ocean’s health, everything is connected. We, the undersigned, reaffirm our commitment to SDG14 and call upon world leaders to take the actions necessary to ensure that the great promise for the advancement of ocean health is faithfully fulfilled in 2022.


Isabella Lövin

Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden (2016 – 2021)

Co-Chair of Friends of Ocean Action

Peter Thomson

United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy

for the Ocean

Co-Chair of Friends of Ocean Action

Helen Ågren

Ambassador for the Ocean, Sweden

Diva Amon

Deep-Sea Biologist and Director, SpeSeas,

Trinidad and Tobago

Marc Benioff

Chair and Co-Chief Executive Officer, Salesforce

Dona Bertarelli

Special Adviser for the Blue Economy, United Nations

Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)

Tiago Pitta e Cunha

Chief Executive Director, Océano Azul Foundation

Maria Damanaki

Principal Adviser, The Paradise International Foundation

Vincent Doumeizel

Director, Safe Seaweed Coalition

Sylvia Earle

President and Chairman, Mission Blue

Minna Epps

Director, Global Marine and Polar Programme,

International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

Patricia Espinosa

Executive Secretary, United Nations Framework

Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)

Danny Faure

President of the Republic of Seychelles (2016 – 2020)

Daniela Fernandez

Founder and Chief Executive Officer,

Sustainable Ocean Alliance

Gloria Fluxà Thienemann

Vice-Chairman and Chief Sustainability Officer,

Iberostar Group

Andrew Forrest

Chair and Founder, Minderoo Foundation

Kerstin S. Forsberg

Co-Founder and Director, Planeta Océano

Members of Friends of Ocean Action

Katherine Garrett-Cox

Chief Executive Officer, GIB Asset Management

Guo Jingjing

Olympic Diving Champion, China; Director, Ocean

Programme, Global Green Technology Center

Nina Jensen

Chief Executive Officer, REV Ocean

Ronny Jumeau

Ambassador for Climate Change and Small Island

Developing States (SIDS) Issues of Seychelles;

Permanent Representative of Seychelles to the United

Nations (2007 – 2012)

Wakao Hanaoka

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Seafood Legacy

Naoko Ishii

Professor and Director, Center for Global Commons,

University of Tokyo

Marco Lambertini

Director-General, WWF International

Pascal Lamy

President Emeritus, Jacques Delors Institute

Jim Leape

Co-Director, Stanford Center for Ocean Solutions

Laura Liswood

Secretary-General, Council of Women World Leaders

Jørgen Lund

Founder and Director, North Atlantic Seafood Forum


Àrni Mathiesen

Senior Adviser, Iceland Ocean Cluster

Douglas McCauley

Professor, University of California Santa Barbara;

Director, Benioff Ocean Initiative

H.M. Queen Noor Al Hussein

Friend of Ocean Action, Jordan

Julie Packard

Executive Director, Monterey Bay Aquarium

Rolly van Rappard

Co-Founder and Co-Chair, CVC

Vladimir Ryabinin

Executive Secretary, International Oceanographic

Commission; Assistant Director-General, United Nations

Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO)

Enric Sala

Explorer-in-Residence, National Geographic Society

M. Sanjayan

Chief Executive Officer, Conservation International

Wendy Schmidt

Co-Founder, Schmidt Ocean Institute; Co-Founder and

President, The Schmidt Family Foundation

Andrew Steer

President, Bezos Earth Fund

Gunhild Stordalen

Founder and Executive Chairman, EAT Foundation

Su Jilan

Professor of Oceanography, Academician,

Chinese Academy of Sciences

Atsushi Sunami

President, Sasakawa Peace Foundation and Ocean Policy

Research Institute, Japan

Thomas Thune Andersen

Chairman, Ørsted

Wang Songlin

Founder and President, Qingdao Marine Conservation

Society (QMCS)

Jan-Gunnar Winther

Director, National Center of Ocean and the Arctic

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