The second UN Ocean Conference drew to a close on Friday, with delegates adopting a Political Declaration titled, “Our Ocean, Our Future, Our Responsibility.”
In the morning, delegates convened in the last of eight interactive dialogues scheduled for the week, coming together to discuss leveraging interlinkages between Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG 14) and other Goals towards the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In their discussions, delegates clarified the indivisibility of the SDGs, with many making linkages between the attainment of SDG 14, on the ocean, and goals related to clean water and sanitation, poverty, food security, health, women, decent work, climate action, cities, terrestrial ecosystems, and partnerships.
In the closing plenary, delegates heard summary reports from each of the interactive dialogues, as well as from representatives from the special events held on the sidelines of the conference during the week.
Delegates spent a longer time than usual addressing credentials. Palau, supported by the US, the Marshall Islands, and others, expressed disappointment that delegates from Taiwan had been barred from the Conference. China, supported by Pakistan, reminded delegations of the One-China policy. Delegations did eventually adopt the credentials report.
Keisha McGuire, Permanent Representative of Grenada to the UN, and Martin Bille Hermann, Permanent Representative of Denmark to the UN, then spoke on the work to arrive at the Conference’s Political Declaration, “Our Ocean, Our Future, Our Responsibility.” Delegates adopted the Political Declaration by acclamation.
In his closing remarks, speaking for Conference Co-President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, Keriako Tobiko, Kenyan Cabinet Secretary for Environment, underlined the need to keep the “Glasgow spirit” on climate finance alive, conclude negotiations on a high-seas treaty, and seriously consider the calls for a moratorium on deep seabed mining until we are clear on the science.
Conference Co-President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, President of Portugal, stressed that the Political Declaration signifies the UN spirit, underlined the need to accord the youth the attention they deserve in decision making on the ocean, and gaveled the Conference to a close at 6:00 pm.
All ENB photos are free to use with attribution. For the 2022 UN Ocean Conference, please use: Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth.
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