29 Nov 2018 Press release Oceans & seas

UN Environment commits to support a sustainable blue economy

Nairobi, 29 November 2018 – Aiming for a better planet and a sustainable economy, UN Environment, together with over 100 delegations, presented various commitments at the first global conference on the sustainable blue economy that took place in Nairobi, Kenya this week.

Cognizant of the potential of cross-cutting policies to drive a sustainable blue economy, UN Environment committed to lead global partnerships to map, assess and value ecosystem services. With this knowledge, different sectors that rely on oceans can make well-informed and sustainable decisions that allow both people and the seas to benefit.

With various discussions around the urgent need for effective waste management taking place at the conference, UN Environment committed to strengthen global partnerships on marine litter, nutrient management and waste water based on the principles of circularity.

“While the incredible potential of our oceans is well known, investment in innovative solutions to maintain healthy oceans remains limited” said Joyce Msuya, Acting Executive Director of UN Environment. “By investing in ocean-based sustainable development, we can safeguard the environment, propel the blue economy to new heights, and ensure that communities and business all thrive.”

UN Environment further committed to promote dialogue and coordination among regional seas programmes and other regional ocean sector organisations that allow effective governance of our oceans and promote conservation and sustainable use of this critical resource. In this, UN Environment will help bring countries together to protect national, regional and international waters, recognizing that with effective governance systems, everybody’s interest can be protected.

The Sustainable Blue Economy conference, convened by the governments of Kenya, Canada and Japan, was the first global conference focusing on new knowledge and solutions for sustainable and inclusive blue economies. Several side events convened by UN Environment focused on marine ecosystem mapping and valuation for cross-sectoral policy-making, water quality monitoring, ocean governance, innovative financing and other sustainable development strategies that displayed how to harnesses the potential of oceans, coasts, rivers and lakes to improve livelihoods.


About the Blue Economy Conference

This is the first global conference on the sustainable blue economy co-hosted in Nairobi, Kenya by Canada and Japan. Held from November 26 to 28, 2018 the conference brought over 4,000 participants from around the world captured concrete commitments and practical actions that can be taken today to help the world transition to the blue economy.

About UN Environment

UN Environment is the leading global voice on the environment. It provides leadership and encourages partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations. UN Environment works with governments, the private sector, civil society and with other UN entities and international organizations across the world. 

For more information, please contact:

Moses Osani, News and Media Unit, UN Environment