THE UNITED NATIONS: UN Secretary-General António Guterres called on Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila) for efforts to protect the oceans.
The recently released Second Global Oceans Assessment confirmed that many of the benefits the global ocean provides to humanity are being undermined by human actions, he said in a post for World Oceans Day, which falls on June 8.
“Our seas are suffocated by plastic waste, which can be found from the most remote atolls to the deepest ocean trenches. Overfishing results in an annual loss of nearly $ 90 billion in net profits, which also increases the vulnerability of women, who are vital for the survival of artisanal fishing enterprises, ”he said.
Aerial photo taken on June 2, 2021 showing the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Australia. The Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest coral reef in the Australian state of Queensland, is described as “the most beautiful marine environment on the planet” and is the primary conservation target for Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef, a cooperative charitable organization that runs a series of preserving programs. XINHUA PHOTO
Carbon emissions cause the oceans to warm and acidify, destroying biodiversity and causing sea level rise that threatens heavily inhabited coasts, he noted.
The theme of this year’s celebration, “The Ocean: Life and Livelihood,” highlights the importance of the oceans to cultural life and the economic survival of communities around the world. More than 3 billion people depend on the ocean for their livelihoods, the vast majority in developing countries, Guterres said.
“As we strive to recover from Covid-19, let’s end our war on nature. This will be essential to achieve the sustainable development goals, keep within reach of the 1.5 degree target of the Paris Agreement and ensure the health of our oceans for present and future generations ”, a- he declared.
The ocean is the mass of salt water that covers about 71 percent of the Earth’s surface. It is also “one of the great bodies of water into which the great ocean is divided”. A common definition lists five oceans, in descending order by area, the Pacific, the Atlantic, India, the Antarctic and the Arctic.
The world’s ocean contains 97 percent of the Earth’s water, and oceanographers have said less than 20 percent of the oceans have been mapped. Since the global ocean is the main component of the earth’s hydrosphere, it is an integral part of life, part of the carbon cycle, and influences climate and weather patterns.
The ocean is home to 230,000 known species, but since much of it is unexplored, the number of species in the ocean is much larger, possibly over 2 million.