Facts and Figures on the Threats to Our Marine Ecosystems

Ocean Atlas available now

The ocean covers 71 percent of the Earth. The ocean is the foundation of the lives and livelihoods of a growing global population. 2.9 million people around the world obtain 20 percent of their protein requirements from fish. The climate is strongly influenced by the interaction between the atmosphere and the ocean. Without the ocean, we cannot survive on this planet. And the ocean is now under great stress from diverse factors. The situation is the result not of any single problem but rather of a whole convergence of crises. We have an ocean crisis!

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The Ocean Conference – 5th June – 9th June 2017 in New York

Without the ocean, the wealth and wellbeing enjoyed by some of the world’s population would not exist. But the future of this unique ecosystem is greatly endangered today. The centuries-old principle of the freedom of the seas, which grants all and sundry the right to the unrestricted use of the ocean and its resources, has lead to overfishing, loss of biodiversity, and ocean pollution. The UN’s Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, ratified in 2015, recognizes the importance of the ocean. Of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, SDG 14 is dedicated to the ocean. The United Nations Ocean Conference from 5–9 June 2017 in New York addresses institutional collaboration for the implementation of national, regional, and global action plans for the protection and preservation of the ocean.

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12 brief lessons about the ocean and humanity

The seas suffer due to climate change. Overexploitation of the ocean is exhausting its natural resources. Acidification, warming, and the rising sea level are already transforming habitats. If we continue on this course, many people will lose their lives and livelihoods.

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Press contact

Ulrich Bähr
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05 – 09 June, 2017, New York
The Ocean Conference, United Nations
Our oceans, our future: Partnering for the implementation of sustainable development goal 14
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Heinrich Böll Foundation Schleswig-Holstein
Heinrich Böll Foundation
The Future Ocean