Progress for ocean conservation

08 December 2020 | Government

Swakopmund • Erwin Leuschner



“As important as the oceans are to life on this planet, so too is our responsibility to cherish and protect this immense natural environment,” President Hage Geingob said in Windhoek while announcing the publishing of a transformational document for a sustainable ocean economy.

Two years ago, 14 countries - including Namibia - joined forces to ensure a sustainable ocean economy. Since then, these countries set up a high-level panel to develop a plan for sustainable ocean management.

“The goal is to create a sustainable marine economy in which effective protection, sustainable production and fair prosperity go hand in hand,” Geingob said.

The transformational document contains Namibia’s commitment to draw up and implement sustainable ocean plans by 2025.

According to Geingob, each of the 14 countries is expected to identify “critical areas”.

In view of Namibia’s technical and financial capacities, it was decided to select three such areas: In addition to a “precautionary approach to seabed mining”, Namibia also selected the sustainable use of marine resources, marine energy and marine transport, as well as marine tourism.

“Namibia is uniquely positioned to harness its marine resources to the benefit of its people and the entire world,” Geingob said, adding that “we are determined to develop a green and blue economy to ensure that our natural resources are at the centre of economic prosperity.”

However, the president recognised that the greatest threat to oceans is humans.

“It is our responsibility to act swiftly and in concert to remove such threats,” he said.

Geingob already mentioned a sustainable ocean economy several times in the past. Last year, prior to the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly, he announced the proclaiming of a surface area of 10% of the entire Namibian Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) as a marine protected area.

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