The Oceans Day at Nagoya

The Oceans Day at Nagoya—the first-ever Oceans Day at a CBD Conference of the Parties– held on October 23, 2010, during the Tenth Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the CBD (COP 10, October 18-29, 2010) in Nagoya, Japan, brought together more than 150 participants from 35 countries representing all sectors of the global oceans community–governments, international organizations, nongovernmental organizations, and the scientific community–to emphasize the importance of marine and coastal biodiversity as a common concern of humankind and essential for preserving life on Earth. Building on the discussions on marine and coastal biodiversity held at the Global Oceans Conference 2010, at UNESCO, Paris, May 3-7, 2010, the Oceans Day at Nagoya addressed the major threats to the world’s marine and coastal biodiversity, which is exacerbated by climate change.

Biodiversity has taken center stage in 2010, which was designated as the International Year of Biodiversity by the United Nations. Parties to the CBD gathered in Japan to assess progress in achieving global biodiversity targets and decide on actions to reduce biodiversity loss in the next decade. Marine and coastal biodiversity, which is facing increased threats from overfishing, rapid coastal development, pollution, and climate change, among other impacts, is one of the main topics under discussion at CBD COP 10.

The Jakarta Mandate on Marine and Coastal Biodiversity, adopted at the second meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1995, reaffirmed the critical need to address the conservation and sustainable use of marine and coastal biological diversity, and urged Parties to initiate immediate action to ensure the long-term health and well-being of marine and coastal biodiversity. Although the Jakarta Mandate may have been implemented at different levels, by various actors, and to different extents in different countries and regions, the overall results are deemed unsatisfactory. However, some progress has been made in advancing cross-sectoral, integrated management of marine resources and space; enhancing science-based policy development; strengthening inter-disciplinary scientific partnerships at global and regional scale; and promoting engagement of multi-stakeholders including ocean industries and high level political leaderships.

Oceans Day at Nagoya addressed the status and trends in biodiversity loss and progress made in achieving biodiversity targets, examined various tools and approaches to conserving and sustainably utilizing marine and coastal biodiversity, and discussed potential next steps in advancing the global oceans agenda. Oceans Day featured presentations from panelists organized into thematic panels focused on major issues in marine and coastal biodiversity.

The co-chairs of the Nagoya Oceans Day drafted the Nagoya Oceans Statement, which called for the high-level government representatives gathered at the CBD COP-10 to rekindle the political will and commitment of resources to halt marine biodiversity loss, restore degraded marine habitats, and to establish global representative and resilient networks of marine and coastal protected areas, in the next decade, 2011-2020, and called for a new process of setting new marine and coastal biodiversity targets at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development 2012 (Rio+20) and at the CBD COP 11 in 2012 in order to move the marine biodiversity agenda forward.

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