Saturday, June 22, 2024

Ocean Conservation Must Consider Equity To Succeed


A new study has been published highlighting the importance of equity if the world is to reach its 2030 conservation targets.

The authors make the key point that without buy-in from indigenous local communities, it will be virtually impossible for the world to reach its targets. The two key promises of the 2030 targets are:

  • Maintain global temperatures 2C below pre-industrial averages.
  • Turn 30% of the world’s oceans into protected areas.

The study was published in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution.

Commenting on the importance of equity, Senior Research and Ocean Advisor for the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and lead author Dr. Joachim Claudet stated:

“We urgently need a transformative change towards ocean sustainability. Such a change can only occur if we rally ocean actors towards more inclusive and equitable forms of sustainable development, climate change adaptation and conservation. In our paper, we propose key leverage points with actionable options for decision-makers to advance ocean equity.”

While Global Oceans Lead Scientist for the World Wildlife Fund, Chair of the People and the Ocean Specialist Group for IUCN and co-author Dr. Nathan Bennett stated:

“Hundreds of millions of people worldwide live near and depend on the ocean. So, it only makes sense that their voices and needs are considered in decisions related to the ocean that will affect their lives. This includes in the development of the blue economy, creation of marine protected areas, and implementation of climate actions. In short, equity must be at the center of ocean governance.”

Dr. Stacy Jupiter, the executive director of marine conservation for the Wildlife Conservation Society who is also a co-author on the paper added:

“Continuing under the status quo is not an option. To effectively achieve the world’s ambitions for sustainable development, climate change and biodiversity in ocean spaces, no one should get left behind. There is a moral and ethical imperative for everyone to think carefully about possible unintended consequences of development and conservation actions. Putting equity up front as a key principle in policy and practice is a necessary first step in ensuring the well-being of all people who use and access the oceans and safeguarding our planet.”

Check out the study here.

Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy
Sam Helmy is a TDI/SDI Instructor Trainer, and PADI Staff and Trimix Instructor. Diving for 28 years, a dive pro for 14, I have traveled extensively chasing my passion for diving. I am passionate about everything diving, with a keen interest in exploration, Sharks and big stuff, Photography and Decompression theory. Diving is definitely the one and only passion that has stayed with me my whole life! Sam is a Staff Writer for