Lisbon, Portugal (JUNE 29, 2022) – Today, the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy (Ocean Panel) welcomes the addition of a new member, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
The United Kingdom has announced its shared ambition to sustainably manage 100% of the ocean area under their national jurisdiction. The announcement comes at a crucial moment when world leaders are meeting in Lisbon, Portugal for the United Nations Ocean Conference. This pivotal conference seeks to accelerate needed science-based innovative solutions aimed at starting a new chapter in global ocean action.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said, “Our oceans sustain lives and livelihoods all around the globe, and at COP26 I was clear that the world needs to step up its ambitions to ensure they thrive.
“That’s why I’m proud that the UK is joining the Ocean Panel, where we look forward to working closely with our partners across the international community to build a resilient, prosperous and sustainable ocean economy for the future.”
The Ocean Panel is supported by the UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean; and is co-chaired by Norway and Palau. Additional members of the Ocean Panel include Australia, Canada, Chile, Fiji, France, Ghana, Indonesia, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, Namibia, Norway, Palau, Portugal, and the United States of America. Together, these 16 nations represent at least 35 percent of its exclusive economic zones (EEZs) and, in joining the Ocean Panel, the United Kingdom will add almost 7 million square kilometres of marine estate to this total.
Norwegian Prime Minster Jonas Gahr Støre, and co-chair of the Ocean Panel, welcomed the United Kingdom’s announcement and said, “I am pleased to welcome the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to the Ocean Panel. Our lives and economies depend on a healthy ocean. I am looking forward to strengthened collaboration on the transition to a sustainable ocean economy where people and planet prosper.”
Surangel Whipps Jr., President of Palau and co-chair of the Ocean Panel, echoed this welcome of the United Kingdom and said, “I continue to be encouraged by the momentum that the Ocean Panel is building for ocean action and look forward to collaborating with Prime Minister Johnson on transitioning to a sustainable ocean economy where effective protection, sustainable production, and equitable prosperity go hand in hand.”
In December 2020, the Ocean Panel presented Transformations for a sustainable ocean economy – A Vision for Protection, Production and Prosperity. Ocean Panel countries are listening to the science, learning from each other and working together to achieve this vision and today, the entry of the United Kingdom into the Ocean Panel bolsters the international momentum towards a sustainable ocean economy.
About the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy
The members of the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy (Ocean Panel) lead nations of highly diverse oceanic, economic and political perspectives. Driven by a commitment to partnership, shared knowledge and science-informed policy, the Ocean Panel aims to advance the values underpinning a sustainable ocean economy—effective protection, sustainable production and equitable prosperity. For more information visit www.oceanpanel.org and @OceanPanel.
For additional inquiries contact Katie.Wood@wri.org.