JNCC scientists will play a pivotal role in supporting protection of the global ocean in a new multi-million pound commitment to enhance protection for the global ocean.
Projects to tackle climate change and protect the global ocean have been given a major boost with the first £16.2 million of funding from the UK’s £500 million Blue Planet Fund, announced today.
The programmes, financed from the UK’s overseas aid budget, will increase marine protection, tackle plastic pollution and the decline of global coral reefs, as well as using the UK’s world-leading expertise to help respond to marine pollution disasters such as the Xpress Pearl in Sri Lanka.
The ocean is a critical carbon sink which every year absorbs almost a third of global CO2 emissions. Around the globe, the ocean supports the livelihoods of one in every ten people, including some of the poorest and most vulnerable.
The UK is also leading calls for a new global '30by30' target, to protect at least 30% of the land and at least 30% of the ocean by 2030. Over eighty countries now support the marine protection target, and the Blue Planet Fund will help make sure that 30by30 becomes a reality.
The projects receiving funding include the Ocean Country Partnership Programme, in which JNCC’s scientists will play a leading role in delivering technical assistance on the identification, management and monitoring of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) as a key conservation tool to help support poverty alleviation and access to sustainable food from the global ocean.
Environment Secretary, George Eustice, said:
"The UK is a global leader in marine protection and will continue to advocate for ambitious climate and ocean action at COP26 this year.
"Our shared ocean is a vital resource and provides habitat to precious marine life, as well as supporting the livelihoods of one in every ten people worldwide.
"The Blue Planet Fund will support many developing countries on the front line of climate change to reduce poverty and improve the health of their seas."
JNCC's Chief Executive, Dr Gemma Harper, said:
"We’re delighted to be a part of the Ocean Country Partnership Programme, delivered under the Blue Planet Fund, leading new and significant work to provide technical assistance on Marine Protected Areas to developing countries who depend heavily on the marine environment for their livelihoods and food. We’re looking forward to be working closely with partners in host countries, as well as Cefas and the MMO in the UK."
For more information about JNCC’s role in the Ocean Country Partnership Programme, visit our OCPP webpage.