The Decade of Ocean Sciences for Sustainable Development was launched by the United Nations to increase knowledge on the terrestrial portion which corresponds to 71% of the whole Planet Earth, collecting 97% of the available water globally. An initiative that has given rise to numerous concrete actions in the international community. Monaco is actively involved in it in the legacy of ocean safeguarding as a key element of its DNA.
From the 14th until the 16th June 2023, the Principality of Monaco hosted the 3rd edition of Foundations Dialogue within the Ocean Decade. The high-level event, held at the Monte-Carlo Bay Hotel & Resort, was inaugurated by H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco, Audrey Azoulay, Director General of UNESCO and Their Royal Highnesses Princess Lalla Hasnaa of Morocco and Princess Hala bint Khaled bin Sultan Al-Saud accompanied by Olivier Wenden, Vice-President and CEO of the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation.
The core mission of this annual rendezvous, organised by UNESCO and Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, was to gather leaders from international philanthropic organisations to discuss impact solutions to promote the Decade of Ocean Sciences. Foundations, in fact, are being considered basic tiles of the global puzzle playing as liaison between private and public sectors as well as with local communities and NGOs. Flexible, reliable, proactive, open to dialogue, engaging, those bodies are pivotal in advancing science and technology to better respond indigenous needs.
Meaningful achievements can be achieved only through a tight synergy among various actors sharing the same values.
« The Environment is one of the major issues of this century, and one of the subjects on which political institutions find it hardest to act, for reasons of resources and scale. So shouldn't our power (...) encourage us to invest more in this area, where there is a need for agile players, on both a local and global scale, with new resources, both financial and human? And aren't the maritime issues that have brought us together today the place where this need is most keenly felt?», highlighted H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco in His keynote speech.
« We come together here, to act for the Decade, and we are fully in line with the mission. We have always considered that taking action is the most effective way to serve the causes we defend. Thus, we are doing it for Africa, its youth, and more broadly, that of the South, whose resilience must be strengthened in the face of the threats of climate change that affect the entire local population. We specifically reiterated this in the Bouknadel Declaration, which we presented at the Lisbon Ocean Conference in 2022. We will do so again, at the Barcelona Conference in 2024 », pointed out H.R.H. Princess Lalla Hasnaa of Morocco, President of the Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of the Environment.
« We have made great progress over this period, but we have always known that to accomplish this great and noble mission, we could not work alone. Co-design is a powerful approach to marine conservation. It allows us to forge alliances and design sustainable solutions that benefit both the environment and the communities that depend on it. This approach has always been the cornerstone of our work, which is guided by our motto "Science without borders"», underlined H.R.H. Princess Hala bint Khaled bin Sultan Al-Saud of Saudi Arabia, President of the Living Oceans Foundation.
« Today, there is trust. It was useful to offer foundations a common platform for using not only money, but also brains. This is a very important development, and I believe it will illuminate the path forward. (...) For the first time in history, we know what needs to be done. We need to engage the science and use the science (including the new science) to move towards ethical, equitable, climate-smart and ecosystem-based ocean planning for a sustainable ocean economy. This unites us all. This unites all the communities », concluded Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of UNESCO's Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission.
Foundations Dialogue held in Monaco reiterated the importance of t involving all stakeholders and make them aware of key issues related to ocean conservation and management. Advanced techniques of communication and skilled communicators will play an essential role in meeting the objective. ***
To know more about the UNESCO Programme please visit: Foundations Dialogue for the Ocean Decade
By Maurice Abbati
Springer International Publishing