Changing Sails: Accelerating Regional Actions for Sustainable Oceans in Asia and the Pacific

Flagship13 May 2020

The ocean and its resources are the lifelines of Asia and the Pacific. As a resource for the economy, livelihoods and identity for coastal communities, the condition of the ocean is inextricably linked to the pathways of sustainable development in Asia and the Pacific.

Produced in line with the 76th Session of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, the theme study Changing Sails: Accelerating Regional Actions for Sustainable Oceans in Asia and the Pacific explores the key areas around which regional platforms can rally interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral solutions for the ocean. It highlights the lack of data and statistics on the ocean, the growing demand for moving towards inclusive and green maritime shipping, deteriorating fish stocks and gaps in fisheries management and the mounting pressure of marine plastic pollution.

The theme study calls for enhanced sharing of ocean data and stronger investment in national statistical systems for collecting and harmonizing ocean data. It underscores the need for enforcing international conventions, norms and standards in relation to maritime shipping, sustainable fisheries and marine pollution. Finally, it proposes strengthening regional platforms, such as the Asia-Pacific Day for the Ocean as avenues for building partnerships, facilitating knowledge and data-sharing and supporting the implementation and monitoring of global agreements.