Sustainably managing global marine ecosystems—the vast majority of which are stressed and in danger of collapse due to overfishing, pollution, and rising water temperatures—is critical to livelihoods and preserving the earth’s natural resources.
Ocean ecosystems can thrive only if marine species and environments are protected and preserved, and human-caused damage is limited and repaired. Addressing marine health requires responsible management by communities that depend on the ocean for their livelihoods.
Today, the vast majority of global marine ecosystems are stressed and in danger of collapse due to overfishing, pollution, and rising water temperatures. iv Illegal and unregulated fishing practices diminish the ability of coastal habitats to replenish themselves and lead to reduced ecological diversity. Unprecedented growth in seafood demand across the developed and emerging world (e.g. China) raises concerns about whether future supply will be able to meet demand.
Coastal communities are empowered to practice effective marine conservation, improving living standards through increased local incomes and food security. Actors across the value chain (producers, consumers, retailers) have incentive to promote transparency in sustainable fishing practices, enabling greater enforcement of protected ecosystems that reverse marine biodiversity loss and ultimately build socio-ecological resilience to climate change.
i Ocean Health Index (link)
ii Ocean Health Index (link)
iii Ocean Health Index (link)
iv Marine Stewardship Council
v New York Times (link)
vi The Guardian (link)
vii Conservation for the Oceans Foundation (link)
viii WWF / BCG Report – Reviving the Ocean Economy (link)
ix Protect Planet Ocean (link)