Nav: Home

Achieving a safe and just future for the ocean economy

October 15, 2019

The economic potential of the oceans is expected to double from US$1.5 trillion in 2010 to US$3 trillion by 2030. Yet managing this growth should be undertaken in a safe and just manner caution a team of international researchers.

In a climate of environmental change and financial uncertainty, much attention has been given to the growth of the "Blue Economy" - a term which refers to the sustainable use of ocean and marine resources for economic growth, jobs, and improved livelihoods. Ocean resources are viewed as lucrative areas for increased investment, including in fisheries, aquaculture, bio-prospecting, renewable energy, oil and gas, and other businesses. Ensuring that socially equitable and sustainable development occurs should be the mandate of governments and industry, maintain an international group of researchers, led by UBC's Nathan Bennett and Rashid Sumaila.

"Coastal countries and small island developing states have the most at stake when it comes to increased economic activities in local waters," said Nathan Bennett, research faculty member in UBC's Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries and lead author on the paper. "It is important that this not be like a Gold Rush scenario, where unbridled ocean development produces substantial harms for both the marine environment and the wellbeing of the populations who dependent on it. In this paper, we provide solutions to proactively address the potential harms produced by ocean development."

The five recommendations in the paper focus on managing for sustainability, benefit sharing, and creating inclusive decision-making processes at local, national and international levels:
    1. Establish a global coordinating body and develop international guidelines;

    2. Ensure national policies and institutions safeguard sustainability;

    3. Promote equitable sharing of benefits and minimization of harms;

    4. Employ inclusive governance and decision-making processes; and

    5. Engage with insights from interdisciplinary ocean science.
"There are currently no set of guidelines, or even an obvious international coordinating body, which focuses on the Blue Economy," said Dr. Rashid Sumaila, senior author, professor at UBC's Institute for the Oceans and Director of the OceanCanada Partnership. "Nothing exists in many nations either. This lack of coordination can lead to situations like we are already seeing in the global fishing industry, where harmful subsidies are leading to overfishing, human rights abuses are occurring, and local access to fish stocks and food security are being undermined."

"The blue economy is already growing. But, we have an opportunity and responsibility to shape future growth so that it is sustainable and equitable," said Bennett. "Including civil society, such as small-scale fishers, women and Indigenous people, in the decision-making and management processes will help to ensure that benefits are shared."
-end-
This paper was released ahead of the Our Oceans international conference, taking place in Oslo Norway on October 23-24, 2019, where one of the focal themes is "sustainable blue economy". Partnerships and commitments will be made at this conference to catalyze sustainable and inclusive blue growth. These topics will also be discussed at the World Ocean Council's Sustainable Ocean Summit being held in Paris, France on November 20-22, 2019."Towards a sustainable and equitable blue economy" was published in Nature Sustainabilitytoday.

University of British Columbia

Related Renewable Energy Articles:

Illuminating the future of renewable energy
A new chemical compound created by researchers at West Virginia University is lighting the way for renewable energy.
Using fiber optics to advance safe and renewable energy
Fiber optic cables, it turns out, can be incredibly useful scientific sensors.
Renewable energy developments threaten biodiverse areas
More than 2000 renewable energy facilities are built in areas of environmental significance and threaten the natural habitats of plant and animal species across the globe.
Could water solve the renewable energy storage challenge?
Seasonally pumped hydropower storage could provide an affordable way to store renewable energy over the long-term, filling a much needed gap to support the transition to renewable energy, according to a new study from IIASA scientists.
Switching to renewable energy could save thousands of lives in Africa
New research from Harvard University and the University of Leicester finds that if Africa chooses a future powered by fossil fuels, nearly 50,000 people could die prematurely each year from fossil fuel emissions by 2030, mostly in South Africa, Nigeria and Malawi.
Scientists take strides towards entirely renewable energy
Researchers have made a major discovery that will make it immeasurably easier for people (or super-computers) to search for an elusive 'green bullet' catalyst that could ultimately provide entirely renewable energy.
Where to install renewable energy in US to achieve greatest benefits
A new Harvard study shows that to achieve the biggest improvements in public health and the greatest benefits from renewable energy, wind turbines should be installed in the Upper Midwest and solar power should be installed in the Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic regions.
Croissant making inspires renewable energy solution
The art of croissant making has inspired researchers from Queen Mary University of London to find a solution to a sustainable energy problem.
Are we underestimating the benefits of investing in renewable energy?
Scientists have estimated the emissions intensity of carbon dioxide and other air pollutants from a major electricity distributor and highlighted key consequences - essential information for policymakers shaping decisions to reduce electricity system emissions.
Lighting the path to renewable energy
Professor Mahesh Bandi of Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology Graduate University (OIST) has co-developed a novel, standardized way of quantifying and comparing these variations in solar power.
More Renewable Energy News and Renewable Energy Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Listen Again: Reinvention
Change is hard, but it's also an opportunity to discover and reimagine what you thought you knew. From our economy, to music, to even ourselves–this hour TED speakers explore the power of reinvention. Guests include OK Go lead singer Damian Kulash Jr., former college gymnastics coach Valorie Kondos Field, Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs, and entrepreneur Nick Hanauer.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Dispatch 6: Strange Times
Covid has disrupted the most basic routines of our days and nights. But in the middle of a conversation about how to fight the virus, we find a place impervious to the stalled plans and frenetic demands of the outside world. It's a very different kind of front line, where urgent work means moving slow, and time is marked out in tiny pre-planned steps. Then, on a walk through the woods, we consider how the tempo of our lives affects our minds and discover how the beats of biology shape our bodies. This episode was produced with help from Molly Webster and Tracie Hunte. Support Radiolab today at Radiolab.org/donate.