The nations of the world have recognized the crucial role of biodiversity in ensuring sustainable development in the outcome document of the Rio + 20 conference and called for greater efforts to implement the Convention on Biological Diversity. In the outcome document, entitled: “The Future we Want,” agreed by heads of state in Rio de Janeiro, the important value of coral reefs is recognized (in the paragraph 176):
176. We also recognize the significant economic, social and environmental contributions of coral reefs, in particular to islands and other coastal States, as well as the significant vulnerability of coral reefs and mangroves to impacts including from climate change, ocean acidification, overfishing, destructive fishing practices and pollution. We support international cooperation with a view to conserving coral reef and mangrove ecosystems and realizing their social, economic and environmental benefits as well as facilitating technical collaboration and voluntary information sharing.
Rio+20 Voluntary Commitments
The Rio+20 Secretariat, together with the UN Global Compact and the Sustainable Energy for All initiative, has received over 700 Rio+20 voluntary commitments. These commitments were made by all stakeholders, including governments, UN system & IGOs, the private sector, civil society and NGOs. Collectively, these tangible commitments mobilize more than $500 billion in actions towards sustainable development.
Among the registered “oceans” commitments include: the Global Partnership for Oceans (lead by the World Bank), the Assessment and Promotion of Progress in the Implementation of the 1992, 2002, and 2012 Global Commitments On Oceans, Coasts, and Small Island Developing States, the Sustainable Maritime Development Initiative by the IMO and the shipping industry, the Global Goal and Commitments to End Plastic Pollution, the Marine Litter Initiative. For the full list of all registered commitments, please click here (PDF File). For more information, please visit the Rio+20 voluntary commitment website.