World Majlis | Living Oceans

World Majlis

Living Oceans: Reversing Our Impact on Marine Ecosystems

The ocean is the origin and the engine of all life on this planet — and it is under threat. How can we stop marine pollution and safeguard the most fundamental of our planet’s life-support systems? According to the United Nations, marine life is suffering irreparable damage from a combination of chemical pollution and waste dumped in the world’s oceans each year. Marine debris has formed five giant garbage patches around the world. Plastics are set to outnumber fish in the seas by 2050. Chemical fertilisers, that ultimately make their way to the oceans, are accelerating the development of “dead zones”, areas where the lack of oxygen makes it impossible for marine life to exist. Our oceans, which cover two thirds of the Earth’s surface, supply 70 percent of the oxygen we breathe, 97 percent of our water and precious nutrients for human health. How can we break the vicious cycle of pollution before these vital supplies become unable to support our well-being and that of the planet? A growing number of initiatives across the world are now seeking to turn the tide on the destruction of our oceans. What resources and knowledge can the oceans and their inhabitants provide? How can we derive benefits from the oceans without further damaging their delicate ecosystems? How should access to the oceans be regulated? How can we use technology to strike a balance between progress and preservation?

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