NATION

We Are Here To Turn The Tide: UN SG

We created these problems. With decisive, coordinated global action, we can solve them. This was the message from United Nations Secretary General António Guterres at the opening of the first
07 Jun 2017 10:50
We Are Here To Turn The Tide: UN SG
United Nations Secretary General António Guterres, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Sweden’s deputy Prime Minister Isabella Lovin at the UN Ocean Conference in New York on June 5, 2017. Photo: DEPTFO News

We created these problems. With decisive, coordinated global action, we can solve them.

This was the message from United Nations Secretary General António Guterres at the opening of the first global Ocean Conference in New York.

Mr Guterres warned that the special relationship between people and the ocean that brings untold benefits for life is under threat as never before and it is all because of human activity.

“Oceans are a testing ground for the principle of multilateralism. The health of our oceans and seas requires us to put aside short-term national gain, to avoid long-term global catastrophe,” Mr Guterres said.

“Pollution, overfishing and the effects of climate change are severely damaging the health of our oceans”, he said.

“According to one recent study, plastic could outweigh fish – if nothing happens – in our seas by 2050.

“Rising sea levels threaten entire countries. Oceans are warming and becoming more acidic, causing coral bleaching and reducing biodiversity. Changing currents will have a serious impact on weather patterns; we must prepare for more frequent storms and droughts.

“Fisheries in some places are collapsing. Dead zones – underwater deserts where life cannot survive because of a lack of oxygen– are growing rapidly in extent and number.  Many species could be extinct within decades.”

Conflicting demands from industry, fishing, shipping, mining and tourism are creating unsustainable levels of stress on coastal ecosystems.

“Numerous reports, global commissions and scientific assessments have described the serious damage to our most vital life support system – but the situation is getting worse. Governments are not making full use of the tools available to them, including the Convention on the Law of the Sea, and UN Oceans.

“We are here today to turn the tide.”

Edited by Karalaini Waqanidrola

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj



5SQRS Clearance


Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper