Thousands Attend Ocean Conference in Lisbon

Thousands Attend Ocean Conference in Lisbon

More than 7,000 people, including representatives from 140 countries, some of whom are at the highest level, will attend the second UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon this Monday, the largest ever dedicated to the subject.

Following the first conference in New York five years earlier, Portugal, together with Kenya, organized a second meeting under the motto “Save the Ocean, Protect the Future”.

It is the subject that brings together politicians from today to Friday, including 25 heads of state and government and a hundred ministers, at least 38 specialized agencies and international organizations, about 1,200 non-governmental organizations and other entities, more than 400 Companies include one. One hundred and fifty universities.

The numbers make the Portugal conference the largest ever event on the oceans, their problems, how to protect them or economic opportunities, noting that a “green transition” is only possible with a “blue transition”, which is a sustainable use. Ocean based on science and technology.

These will be the central themes of the event, which takes place mainly in the Altice Arena, Parque das Nações, the main event of which includes three hundred other events, four of them special, organized by Portugal, a high level seminar on water, today, and a forum on Tuesday on the sustainable blue economy and investment.

Over the weekend, a symposium on the topic “Finding Action Across the Ocean: Local and Regional Governments” was held in Matosinhos.

A youth forum also concluded on Sunday, in which over a hundred young people from all continents gathered to inspire, enhance and accelerate the action of the youngest youth in protecting the oceans, with the Secretary-General of the United Nations at the concluding session , Antonio Guterres, who is attending the launch of the work today, and Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of the Republic of Portugal.

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From today to Friday, combating marine pollution, promoting and strengthening sustainable ocean-based economies, managing and protecting marine and coastal ecosystems, reducing ocean acidification, deoxygenation and warming, making fisheries sustainable Subjects such as building, enhancing scientific knowledge and marine technology will improve. Sustainable use of the oceans, and enhancing ties between Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 (protecting marine life) and other goals of the 2030 Agenda.

Portugal, as announced by the government, hopes to issue the United Nations Convention on the Ocean (UNOC) Lisbon Declaration, which will help achieve SDG 14, which will accelerate the fight against pollution and protect biodiversity and sustainability. will increase. And that the notion of the importance of the oceans in the fight against climate change becomes generalised.

The oceans are responsible for producing half of the planet’s oxygen, are home to more than 220,000 species and support three billion people. They absorb 91% of the excess heat from the atmosphere and a great deal of carbon dioxide emissions, so they are fundamental in the fight against climate change.

And it is to remember this connection, that “saving the ocean is saving the climate” that more than 60 organizations from around the world have mobilized for the Blue March for Climate, which is scheduled in Lisbon on Wednesday and will be held at the pavilion. Will end next to where the conference takes place.

Civil society organizations want to build a global network of marine protected areas, which cover 30% of the ocean, and end subsidies for unsustainable fishing, among other measures.

Taking advantage of Conference Week, hundreds of parallel ocean-related actions are taking place across Lisbon that have arisen from civil society, whether for information, protest or raising awareness. And many others also take place in the Portuguese capital due to UNOC, such as the fourth edition of “Belago-Portuguese Routes for the Blue Economy”, today.

There are also hundreds of bilateral meetings between the political leaders present.

At least 16 heads of state attending Portugal this week are from Angola, France (currently the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union), Norway or Colombia. The Presidents of Kenya and Nigeria pay a state visit to Portugal.

The United States is represented by John Kerry, President Joe Biden’s special climate envoy. From Russia comes Ruslan Adelgariev, adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin on sea and climate issues.

Portugal will be permanently represented, namely by the President of the Republic, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of the Economy and the Sea, together with the Secretaries of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, Internationalization and State. These A.

The UNOC in Lisbon was approved by the UN in 2019 and was supposed to take place in 2020, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

About the author: Sarah Gracie

"Proud social media buff. Unapologetic web scholar. Internet guru. Lifelong music junkie. Travel specialist."

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