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Over time, our oceans have increasingly become dumping grounds for different types of waste, including sewage, industrial waste, chemicals, plastics andlitter. An estimated 80% of marine pollution originates from land-based sources including wastewater and nutrients loadings. Worldwide, pollution in coastal waters has increased exponentially during the last decades due to population growth and the increasing number of anthropogenic activities. Coral reefs are particularly vulnerable to wastewater and nutrient pollution, which consequently threatens the health and well‐being of hundreds of millions of people who depend on coral reef ecosystem services for nutrition, livelihoods and a safe living environment. With the influences of ocean warming and coral bleaching impacts, land-based pollution constitutes a significant additional threat that must be addressed with urgency. 

This webinar will explore the link between land-based pollution and coral reefs. The experts will elaborate on the impacts that pollution, particularly wastewater and nutrient, have on the health of coral reefs and the consequentimplicationsforhuman health and the environment. They will also highlight case studies and best practices on how to address the impact of pollution on coral reefs.

The webinar is an event in support of the 2018 International Year of the Reef. 

To register for the webinar, please use the following link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8202508866479429889.      

10.00 am to 11.30 am EAT, Nairobi time

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The webinar is organized by the Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA) and the Coral Reef Unit of the Marine and Coastal Ecosystems Branch, UN Environment.  

The Global Programme of Action for the Protection of the Marine Environment from Land-Based Activities (GPA) is an intergovernmental cooperation mechanism that aims to prevent the degradation of the marine environment from land-based activities. Initially established to address nine source categories of marine pollution - sewage, persistent organic pollutants, radioactive substances, heavy metals, oils, nutrients, sediment mobilization, litter and physical alteration and destruction of habitat - the Programme has, since 2012, focused on marine litter, nutrient pollution, and wastewater. Together with its partners and through the Global Wastewater Initiative (GW²I) and Global Partnership on Nutrient Management (GPNM), the Programme works on various issues related to sustainable wastewater and nutrient management including policy guidelines, technology, knowledge generation, capacity building and awareness-raising. The work of the partnerships is contributing to the implementation of the 2030 agenda, particularly SDG 6.3 and 14.1.

Together with its partners and through the Global Coral Reef Partnership, the Coral Reef Unit, addresses the environmental causes that lead to loss of ecosystems services and affect the health of coral reefs. It also supports countries deliver internationally agreed commitments through theecosystem-basedmanagement of coral reefs. The overall goal of the partnership is to promote and demonstrate ecosystem-based marine management in coral reef areas, in line with UN Environment’s Governing Council and UNEA decisions, and as a contribution towards international targets such as Sustainable Development Goal 14. 



Michael Sweet – Associate Professor in Aquatic Biology, University of Derby

Michael Sweet is an academic at the University of Derby, United Kingdom. He hasa strong passion for the importance of public engagement in science and spent almost four years traveling around the world as a research assistant for numerous scientific projects. These included biodiversity index surveys in Asia and Africa. Dr. Sweet is currently the manager of the Aquatic Research Facility and director of studies for five PhDstudents and two masters. He also supervises numerous undergraduate research projects in their final year of study. To date, he has published more than 50 research articles in peer-reviewedjournals and won numerous awards including the Charles Darwin Award lecture from the British Science Association and staff excellence awards at the University of Derby. 

Jon Brodie – Partner and Senior Scientist, C2O Consulting

Jon Brodie is a Senior Scientist and Partner at C2O Consulting and Professorial Fellow with the Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies, James Cook University, Australia. For the last 30 years his interests have been in environmental research and consultancy and the management of marine and freshwater pollution. He managed the Water Quality Research and Management Program of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. His primary area of research interest is now associated with water quality issues for the Great Barrier Reef, but he has also worked extensively overseas, in the Middle East, Asia and the Pacific. Jon is also closely involved in policy advice to governments regarding management of water quality issues for the Great Barrier Reef. He was the lead author of the Scientific Consensus Statement in both 2008, 2013 and 2016/2017 documenting the status of knowledge and management for water quality issues affecting the Great Barrier Reef for the Queensland and Australian Governments.

Gil Jacinto – Professor, Marine Science Institute, University of the Philippines Diliman 

Gil S. Jacinto earned his Ph.D. in marine chemistry in 1988 from the University of Liverpool, England and is currently a Professor at the Marine Science Institute of the University of the Philippines Diliman. His work and publications on eutrophication and hypoxia in Manila Bay, one of the pollution hotspots in East Asia, provide a benchmark against which impacts of management interventions on a watershed scale in tropical country can be evaluated. He was co-principal investigator for the development of regional models of coastal effects focusing on Manila Bay for the GEF/UNEP Global Foundations for Reducing Nutrient Enrichment and Oxygen Depletion from Land-Based Pollution.