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April 11, 2019 - The Vegan Authority

Greenpeace launching pole to pole expedition to promote 'Global Ocean Treaty'

Greenpeace launching pole to pole expedition to promote 'Global Ocean Treaty'
Credit: GreenpeaceFile Photo / © Photabulous!

Greenpeace announced today that it is launching one of its biggest ever expeditions – a pole to pole voyage from the Arctic to the Antarctic in order to promote a Global Ocean Treaty.

The ambitious plans for a Global Ocean Treaty is urgently needed to give our oceans the protection they need, says Greenpeace. They are hoping the pole to pole trek, will highlight the many threats facing our global oceans, also known as the high seas. This is the area of the earth's oceans not bound by "flags, languages and national divisions". Together, these international waters encompass nearly half of our planet surface, and more than 64% of the world's oceans.

Fast developing technology is changing access to the earth's vast oceans that were once, simply out of reach, being just too distant, too deep, too rough, too cold and too dangerous.

Today, industrial fishing vessels can fish further out at sea and to depths of thousands of metres, reaching areas such as the Arctic and Antarctic that were once too remote. Add to this developments in mining and drilling technology that permit industrial activity far out in the global oceans and it's clear: there are no longer any safe havens

The Protect the Oceans expedition will see scientists and campaigners team up to research the threats of climate change, overfishing, plastic pollution, deep sea mining and oil drilling. The team will be visiting many of the areas identified as in need of protection by the groundbreaking academic study 30×30: A Blueprint for Ocean Protection, released last week.

“Our blue planet is under threat and it’s up to all of us to protect it,” said Frida Bengtsson of Greenpeace’s Protect the Oceans campaign.

“This voyage will take us to the front lines of the battle to defend our oceans, and we’re thrilled to be working with world-leading scientists to help their crucial work in understanding how our seas and marine life are changing and what we can do about it.”

“Negotiations towards a Global Ocean Treaty at the UN are already under way and it’s vital that governments get it right. We need a strong ocean treaty that has the teeth to create fully protected areas, free from harmful human activity. The science is clear that we need a network of these ocean sanctuaries covering at least a third of the world’s oceans by 2030 if we’re to defend precious wildlife, help to tackle climate change and provide food security for billions of people. Our fate and the fate of the oceans are intimately connected.”

The Greenpeace ship Esperanza is in London this week ahead of the expedition, which is being launched at an event on Thursday evening in London’s City Hall on the River Thames, with the UK Environment Secretary Michael Gove MP, Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry MP and marine biologist and co-author of the 30×30 report Professor Callum Roberts.


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