The 4th Global Conference on Oceans, Coasts, and Islands will mobilize high-level policy attention, topical working groups, analytical papers, and other contributions to provide a review of progress achieved (or lack thereof) in advancing ecosystem management and integrated coastal and ocean management by 2010 at national and regional (transboundary) levels, and in the 64% of the ocean beyond national jurisdiction, and on the allied goals of reducing marine biodiversity loss by 2010 and of establishing networks of marine protected areas by 2012 (goals adopted by the world’s political leaders at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development). These goals are considered in the context of climate change, which, as indicated in the 2007 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), will have profound effects on ecosystems and coastal populations around the world.
The conference will be held in Hanoi, Vietnam. The second fastest-growing economy in Asia, Vietnam has made significant strides in coastal and marine management in recent years through the development of integrated coastal management, marine protected areas, and a national ocean strategy. Vietnam was recently chosen as the first “pilot” country in the UN’s effort to unify the work of its agencies at the national level through its “One UN” pilot program, the result of the High-Level Panel on UN System-wide Coherence in areas of Development, Humanitarian Assistance and the Environment (enhanced UN coherence was also adopted as a goal of the world’s political leaders at the World Summit on Sustainable Development).
The Global Conference is organized by the Global Forum on Oceans, Coasts, and Islands, and by the Government of Vietnam, with the leadership of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) – Fisheries, and with leadership roles by a number of organizations. Key ocean-oriented governments, nongovernmental organizations, and industry are being invited, as well, to play a pivotal role in the organization of the Conference and the dissemination of its outputs. The Global Forum Steering Committee, responsible for organizing the conference, may be found at the end of this announcement.
The Conference will focus on three major themes related to achieving ecosystem management and integrated coastal and ocean management at national and regional levels, and in areas beyond national jurisdiction, as follows:
Theme 1. Achieving Ecosystem management and integrated coastal and ocean management by 2010
- Cross-Cutting Issues
- Large Marine Ecosystems
- Marine Biodiversity and Networks of Marine Protected Areas
- Linking the Management of Freshwater, Oceans, and Coasts
- Fisheries and Aquaculture-Sustainability and Governance
- Enhancing Ocean Use Access Agreements in the Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) of Developing Nations
- Maritime Transportation
Theme 2. Climate, Oceans, and Security: Addressing Impacts in Vulnerable Ecosystems and in Vulnerable Coastal Communities, especially in Small Island Developing States (SIDS)
- Cross-Cutting Issues– i) Vulnerable Communities (Adaptation, Environmental Refugees, Public Health); ii) Vulnerable Ecosystems (Natural Disasters, Sea Level Rise, Ocean Acidification, Ocean Warming)
- Small Island Developing States and the Mauritius Strategy
Theme 3. Addressing the Governance of Marine Ecosystems and Uses in Areas Beyond the Limits of National Jurisdiction
- Cross-Cutting Issues– i) Overall Governance Issues; ii) Ecosystems and Uses (Marine Biodiversity, Fisheries, Bioprospecting, Deep Seabed Mining, Tourism, Maritime Transportation)
Overarching, Cross-cutting Issues
- Capacity Development
- Marine Ecosystem Productivity/Services
- Indicators for Progress
- Compliance and Enforcement
- Public Education/Outreach/Media