EU commits €560m more to protect world's oceans
7 October, 2017
Opening the Our Oceans Conference in Malta last Wednesday, the EU High Representative Federica Mogherini (pictured) announced €560m of EU funds for 36 concrete actions to protect and ensure the security of the world's oceans. The international event, with the participation of more than 40 ministers and experts from 100 countries, was hosted by Mogherini and Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.
Mogherini noted that in our globalised world 90% of world trade is seaborne and millions of jobs and livelihoods depend on the oceans, which are a common good and must be managed through international cooperation. She alarmed that the oceans are in danger and by 2050 they could contain more plastic than fish. At the same time, the ocean is becoming a security threat, with rising sea levels forcing millions of people to migrate, and warmer oceans leading to more devastating hurricanes, the EU first diplomat said. She added that the European Union believes that a globalised world needs a more cooperative global governance. “And it is difficult, actually impossible, to imagine a global governance without a cooperative oceans' governance," Mogherini believes.
In his address at the event, Britain's Prince Charles urged consumers to match the commitment made by some of the world's biggest brands to stop the devastating impact plastics are having on our oceans. "The growing threat to the world's marine ecology has reached a critical point where plastics are now on the menu," he told the conference.