On 24 September 2019, the UK Government announced a new global alliance to help safeguard the world’s ocean and protect its wildlife, highlighted by the #30by30 hashtag.
Plastic pollution, warming sea temperatures and human activity are having a significant impact on the world’s marine environments and even putting certain species at risk of extinction.
The #30by30 initiative is pushing for at least 30% of the global ocean to be protected in Marine Protected Areas (MPA) by 2030, and has so far been supported by Belize, Costa Rica, Finland, Gabon, Kenya, Seychelles, Vanuatu, Portugal, Palau and Belgium.
The initiative aims to treble the existing globally-agreed targets, in the hope that at least a third of the ocean is safeguarded in MPA’s over the next decade. It is hoped these protections will help sensitive species such as seahorses, turtles and corals to thrive, and can help fight climate change by protecting key carbon habitats such as mangrove forests and seagrass meadows.
The UK will also call for the #30by30 initiative to be adopted at the next Convention on Biological Diversity conference in China and for it to be introduced into international law through the High Seas Treaty in 2020.
Source: Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), 24 September 2019