The largest ocean protection act in history
The following guest blog has been written by Only One's Partnerships Lead Diego Jimenez. Only One is calling for the protection of Antarctic waters during the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) meeting place this week.
Have you seen news about the alarming loss of ice in the Arctic and Antarctica? Have you read about coral reefs turned a ghostly shade of white? Are you aware of the dangers facing mangrove forests? Has any of this sparked an urgency to take action, but you aren’t sure what to do or how to do it? Well, you’re not alone.
While the world grapples with the undeniable reality of accelerating climate change and declining ocean health, figuring out how each of us can immediately contribute to solutions remains challenging.
This is why we, Only One, decided to launch a new home for solutions and community action – working to protect and restore the ocean, tackle the climate crisis, and help fuel the movement for a more just and equitable planet.
The ocean is the heart of our blue planet, but due to human activities, it is now being thrown out of balance and pushed toward imminent collapse. Yet while the ocean is certainly in trouble, it is not just a victim. The ocean holds enormous power to help us rewrite the future of our planet and it has the capacity to bounce back if we just give it an opportunity to do so.
In partnership with leading ocean conservation organisations – including Ocean Unite, The Pew Charitable Trusts, and SeaLegacy – Only One has launched a petition calling on world leaders to protect Antarctic waters from overfishing, asking them to designate three new marine protected areas (MPAs) at the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) meeting taking place this week.
Together, the East Antarctica, Antarctic Peninsula, and Weddell Sea MPAs would protect almost 1% of the ocean globally by covering approximately four million square kilometres. It would represent the largest act of ocean protection in history.
More than ever, it is clear how interconnected we all are. What happens in one part of the world impacts the fate of people and nature everywhere, both now and stretching far into the future.
The climate emergency, the COVID-19 pandemic, the loss of species and environmental injustice are interconnected and they require that more people from a diversity of backgrounds and from all over the world join the conversation, understand the issues, and work together to achieve the necessary changes.
We need a new spirit of collaboration and a new vision for our shared future – one that challenges our understanding of even the most familiar subjects, including the ocean.
As individuals, we cannot face this alone, but when we work together we have the power to rewrite the future. We have only one planet and only one ocean, and there is only one way to do this: Together.
- This is a guest blog and may not represent the views of Virgin.com. Please see virgin.com/terms for more details.
This post is part of a series produced by Virgin Unite in partnership with Ocean Unite, an initiative to unite and activate powerful voices for ocean-conservation action. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of Ocean Unite.