01 Nov 2019 News

Nairobi Convention Marine and Coastal News Round-Up in the Western Indian Ocean (28th October - 1st November)

Local fishing off the coast of Zanzibar. Rob Barnes, Grid Arendal 2016.

Welcome, Nairobi Convention Member States, partners, and friends, to this installment of the Weekly News Round-up! Please keep reading to find out what’s new in efforts to protect, conserve and develop the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) region.

We look forward to continuing our work with you to create a prosperous WIO region with healthy rivers, coasts, and oceans.

Upcoming Events:

The Nairobi Convention, in executing the WIOSAP project, is organizing a workshop for managers and policy-makers on Mainstreaming of Environmental Flows into Integrated Water Resources Management to be held on 6 - 8 November 2019 in Cape Town, South Africa.

The Nairobi Convention and the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (SwAM) are holding a training on Marine Spatial Planning for Somalia government representatives from 11-13 November in Seychelles. The workshop will introduce participants to the advantages of spatial planning; share WIO experiences on MSP; and discuss the need for and plans for river basin management in the Juba-Shebelle region.

The SAPPHIRE project of the Nairobi Convention will be hosting the Leadership Renewal Workshop for Senior Officials and Policy Makers (Women) in Marine Policy and Ocean Governance in the WIO Region in Mombasa, Kenya from 4-6 December. The leadership renewal workshop seeks to promote the empowerment, active participation, and networking among officials, women marine scientists and experts in charge of policy formulation, decision-making and implementation of policies and programmes on coastal and marine ecosystem management and ocean governance.



Kenya issues Smart Identity (ID) cards to Protect Fishing and Mangrove Forests

Fishing communities on Kenya's north coast will be the first to benefit from "smart" identity cards aimed at distinguishing genuine fishermen and loggers from poachers who raid waters and cut down mangroves vital to ease climate change threats. Each government-issued Mvuvi card - the word means "fisher" in Swahili - features a photo and fingerprint taken from its registered owner. Authorities will be able to read the cards using smartphones loaded with communications software that allows short-range wireless data transfers…………….read more 

Financing Ocean Protection: Strengthening the Financing of Seychelles Protected Area Network

Our future depends on a clean and healthy ocean, where protection and sustainable use go hand in hand. The ocean is under threat from the effects of climate change, pollution, loss of biodiversity and unsustainable use. To respond we need to build partnerships between government, industry, science and civil society, putting knowledge, technology and finance into action. In Seychelles they're doing just that: financing ocean protection……….read more 

New partnership to Help Seychelles’ Tourism Industry Accelerate Sustainable Practices

Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation has joined forces with Seychelles’ tourism department with the aim of increasing sustainable tourism’s best practices……….read more 

Tanzania: Dar es Salaam Readies for SADC Blue Economy Strategy

Blue economy is labeled as the next frontier for member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Tanzania is ready to throw its weight to reap the benefits. As a country, a member state and chair of SADC, Tanzania is strategizing to tap the opportunities, given the fact that it is endowed with a long coastline in the Indian Ocean, approximately 1,424 kilometres……..read more 

Fighting Back Against Marine Litter in the Western Indian Ocean

Marine litter has become an urgent issue across the world, with thousands of pieces of trash estimated to be afloat on every square mile of ocean. If nothing changes, the oceans may well have more plastic than fish (by weight) by 2050. Such staggering amounts of plastic will have severe impacts on the functioning of ocean ecosystems and the economic, health, and climate services they provide. The Western Indian Ocean (WIO) region is not immune to this challenge, with the growing amount of debris and litter exacting environmental, economic, safety, health and cultural tolls on countries in the region. Although there are several national and regional initiatives related to curbing marine litter, coordination and sharing of best practices and lessons has been limited………..read more

Forging an Ocean Governance Strategy for the Western Indian Ocean

Oceans and the multiple benefits they bring—such as food, jobs, oxygen, and more—are, by their very nature, a shared resource. Protecting, managing, and using the ocean is thus also a shared responsibility, one that requires strong cross-country governance. Currently, marine and coastal resources in the Western Indian Ocean (WIO) region are managed by various institutions, organizations, agreements, and commissions, all of which have independent and often overlapping mandates. Effectively addressing threats to the WIO will require these bodies, the multiple users of the ocean, and related policies and legislation to be harmonized and realigned at the national, regional, and international levels………read more 

Seagrass—Secret Weapon in the Fight Against Global Heating

According to report, ‘The Ocean as a Solution to Climate Change: 5 Opportunities for Action’, published by the World Resources Institute, while the mitigation potential per unit area of restoring seagrasses is relatively high, though not as high as for restoring saltmarshes or mangroves, the mitigation potential of seagrass conservation is exceptionally high, and much higher than that of saltmarshes and mangroves………read more

Read the full-length report

Summary for Decision-makers 


Coastal Risk Screening Tool: Land Projected to be Below Annual Flood Level in 2050

Improved elevation data indicate far greater global threats from sea level rise and coastal flooding than previously thought, and greater benefits from reducing their causes. A report and scientific paper (below) detail research methods and results for 135 nations and globally. Compare elevation datasets here or select "Change projections" to see or change projection details such as year or pollution scenario…… Go to the site 

New Elevation Data Triple Estimates of Global Vulnerability to Sea-level Rise and Coastal Flooding

Under high emissions, CoastalDEM indicates up to 630 M people live on land below projected annual flood levels for 2100, and up to 340 M for mid-century, versus roughly 250 M at present. Using the new, Coastal risk screening tool for land projected to be below Annual Flood Level in 2050, this study estimates one billion people now occupy land less than 10 m above current high tide lines, including 250 M below 1 metre……read more

Call for Registration: 6th International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Management Symposium: Healthy Reef, Wealthy Ocean

The upcoming 6th International Tropical Marine Ecosystems Management Symposium (ITMEMS 6) will be held in Manado, (Indonesia) between the 14th-17th of April 2020 under the theme ‘Healthy Reef, Wealthy Ocean'.  The objective of this symposium is to explore approaches in sustainable coral reef management and their related ecosystems. The organizers are currently developing the programme and welcome your suggestions on topics you would like to see included in this symposium. Registration is now open and interested participants are requested to complete the online participants questionnaire by 15th November to be considered…….click here for more details and registration link

Ocean Acidification Can Cause Mass Extinctions, Fossils Reveal

Ocean acidification can cause the mass extinction of marine life, fossil evidence from 66m years ago has revealed. A key impact of today’s climate crisis is that seas are again getting more acidic, as they absorb carbon emissions from the burning of coal, oil and gas. Scientists said the latest research is a warning that humanity is risking potential “ecological collapse” in the oceans, which produce half the oxygen we breathe……….read more

Read the Full-Length paper 

Data on Global Fishing Activity and Ocean Ecosystems Now Available on Bloomberg Terminal

As marine ecosystems and coastal communities increasingly face pressures due to overfishing and climate change, a new partnership initiative by Bloomberg , the Global Fishing Watch will bring data on global fishing activities to the Bloomberg Terminal. This initiative will provide Bloomberg Terminal subscribers with fisheries data to inform global efforts to combat these mounting challenges. As climate change is increasingly considered by companies in their financial decisions, the Bloomberg Terminal’s custom mapping and geospatial tools help companies, investors and researchers better picture climate-related risks and opportunities…………read more



Senior Expert on the Development of a Private Sector Engagement Strategy with the Nairobi Convention SAPPHIRE project

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Application Deadline: 06 November 2019

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