The United Nations proclaimed the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) to support efforts to reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health and gather ocean stakeholders worldwide behind a common framework that will ensure ocean science can fully support countries in creating improved conditions for sustainable development of the Ocean.
The Decade facilitates the effort of the global ocean community in responding to the pressing need for adaptation strategies and science-informed policy responses to global change.
To do so, the UN Ocean Decade endorses so called Implementing Partners, which are selected stakeholder institutions, networks or groups that are committed to the vision and mission of the Decade, and that are making significant and sustained efforts to support the Decade through the implementation of specific tasks.
Since 2021, JPI Oceans is a UN Ocean Decade Implementing Partner for Europe.
In this role, JPI Oceans will facilitate and coordinate national, regional and programmatic contributions to Ocean Decade Actions. This will include mobilisation of JPI Oceans’s network of members towards scoping for new activities and partnerships, resource mobilisation, and communication and outreach.
“We are honoured to have the opportunity to help contribute to the UN’s ambitious idea of an Ocean Decade with some equally ambitious actions to make the ocean a better place,” said Thorsten Kiefer, JPI Oceans Executive Director. “The pan-European member countries of JPI Oceans were always dedicated to the Decade’s ambition. As an Implementing Partner we now welcome the mandate to align their national priorities with the Decade’s global agenda.” The JPI Oceans Management Board Task Team consists of Management Board members from Estonia (Katarina Viik), Italy (Angelo Camerlenghi), Germany (Susanne Korich), and Norway (Eivind Lorentzen).
The activities of JPI Oceans as Decade Implementing Partner for Europe will be regularly highlighted via the Ocean Decade website and social media channels.
JPI Oceans plans to focus its contribution to the Decade and make a difference particularly through its Joint Actions and strategic engagements.
A first Decade implementing activity was launched through a co-branded Call for projects on Underwater Noise in the Marine Environment. Supported by Belgium, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Norway, Poland, Romania, Spain, and together with BANOS, BlueMed and NOAA, the call is endorsed as JPI Oceans’ first focused contribution to the implementation of the UN Ocean Decade. It offers a concrete opportunity to systematically approach ocean challenges, support policy and governance, and carry out experimental research activities on the emerging issue of the acoustic pollution of ocean and seas. As a result of the call, five projects were selected for funding and endorsed as UN Ocean Decade projects.
In early 2022, the Knowledge Hub on Sea Level Rise was also endorsed as a UN Ocean Decade project, and will support the UN Ocean Decade Programme CoastPredict.
The Earth’s seas and ocean are the largest component of the climate-stabilizing system that supports life on Earth and human well-being. The ocean also contributes to economies and form a huge part of the world’s natural and cultural heritage. However, over-exploitation, insufficient governance and large-scale climate-related changes, lead to ecosystem degradation and put the ocean under severe and multiple stresses, creating complex and often unpredictable feedbacks. These stressors will likely increase as population grows towards the expected 9 billion by 2050. A concerted effort by the global ocean community is needed to plan for the next ten years in ocean science and technology to deliver, together, the ocean we need for the future we want.