A roadmap to healthy oceans
We leave behind a month of January lashed by the storm Gloria. Last September the special report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) talked about this in clear terms; what looked like a distant prediction, has materialized a few months later. The report predicts a higher frequency of episodes of extreme sea level. For every degree of additional warming, events which happened once in a 100 year will become have an annual periodicity. The risks will increase for small islands and low-lying coastal cities. The debate is out there: do we rebuild things as they were – which could lead to a waste of public money - or re-think our coastal planning?
At an international level, the EU has lost a strong advocate for nature conservation at European level. We hope to continue counting on this positive British influence. Brexit has coincided with the launch of two marine conservation initiatives: the Blue Manifesto and the Ocean Week.
The Blue Manifesto is a rescue plan for Europe’s marine environment. The plan was launched by 102 environmental organizations, led by Seas at Seas at Risk, BirdLife Europe, ClientEarth, Oceana, Surfrider Foundation Europe and WWF. The manifesto sets specific goals to regenerate the European coasts and seas by 2030. Our work in the Balearic Islands is closely aligned with this.
- At least 30% of the ocean to be highly or fully protected by 2030.
- Shift to low-impact fishing
- Securing a pollution-free ocean
- Planning of human activities that support the restoration of thriving marine ecosystems.
The Ocean Week 2020 takes place this week in Brussels. Multiple events, debates and activities will highlight the enormous threats that European marine species and habitats suffer and will focus on the solutions needed to solve them.
Both initiatives - Blue Manifesto and Ocean Week - aim to strengthen Europe's leadership in marine conservation and regeneration. An opportunity for the Balearic Islands to raise the level of ambition and lead the way in marine conservation in Europe and the Mediterranean.