Oceans & Seas

Oceans and seas play a vital role in the context of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as they significantly contribute to the Earth's biosphere's health and the global economy. They are critical to sustaining life on earth, acting as a major source of food and oxygen while also serving as natural carbon sinks that mitigate climate change impacts. SDG 14, "Life Below Water," explicitly acknowledges the importance of conservation and the sustainable use of the world's oceans, seas, and marine resources.

Oceans absorb about 30% of carbon dioxide produced by humans, buffering the impacts of global warming. However, this process has implications such as ocean acidification, negatively impacting marine biodiversity and ecosystems. These impacts, coupled with unsustainable fishing practices and pollution, threaten the health of our oceans and seas. SDG 14 sets targets to prevent and reduce marine pollution of all kinds, sustainably manage and protect marine and coastal ecosystems, and regulate harvesting and end overfishing to restore fish stocks to sustainable levels.

Oceans also support economic wellbeing. Over three billion people depend on marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. By protecting oceanic ecosystems, the SDGs also support SDG 1, "No Poverty," and SDG 8, "Decent Work and Economic Growth." Furthermore, the oceanic routes are critical for global trade, supporting SDG 9, "Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure."

Furthermore, by implementing strategies for cleaner and more sustainable use of oceans and seas, it can also contribute to SDG 13, "Climate Action." For instance, developing and implementing new technologies to harness energy from waves and tides can promote renewable energy usage and reduce reliance on fossil fuels, aligning with SDG 7, "Affordable and Clean Energy."

Marine plastic pollution has been a growing concern for decades. Single-use plastics (plastic bags and microbeads) are a significant source of this pollution. Although research outlining environmental, social, and economic impacts of marine plastic pollution is growing, few studies have examined policy and legislative tools to reduce plastic pollution, particularly single-use plastics (plastic bags and microbeads). This paper reviews current international market-based strategies and policies to reduce plastic bags and microbeads.
Global food security is a priority for the future development agenda of the United Nations. Given the high dependence of the modern global food production system on the continuous supply of commercial phosphorus (P) fertilizers, the goal of achieving global food security could be hampered by any form of paucity of the global P resource. P is a finite, non-substitutable, non-renewable, and geographically restricted resource. The anthropogenic influences on this critical resource are likely to pose a number of challenges to its sustainability.
To advance goal 14 (life below water), age and growth studies have been carried out on fish so that scientists and fisheries can better understand exploitation rates and assess stock levels.
The Blueprint for Business Leadership on the SDGs aims to inspire all business — regardless of size, sector or geography — to take leading action in support of the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It illustrates how the five leadership qualities of Ambition, Collaboration, Accountability, Consistency, and Intentional can be applied to a business' strategy, business model, products, supply chain, partnerships, and operations to raise the bar and create impact at scale. The Blueprint is a tool for any business that is ready to advance its principled approach to SDG action to become a leader. This chapter relates specifically to SDG 14.
Future climate change is usually projected by coupled earth system models under specific emission scenarios designed by integrated assessment models (IAMs), and this offline approach means there is no interaction between the coupled earth system models and the IAMs. This paper introduces a new method to design possible future emission scenarios and corresponding climate change, in which a simple economic and climate damage component is added to the coupled earth system model of Beijing Normal University (BNU-ESM).
Elsevier, Marine Policy, Volume 74, 1 December 2016
Changing forms of seafood consumption in China hold immense significance for the marine ecosystems that supply this market, and are a fundamentally important challenge to address for global environmental sustainability. Drawing on recent findings from extensive ethnographic and survey research with seafood traders and consumers in China, this paper analyses policies for improving sustainable seafood consumption in China.
Increasing interest in deep-seabed mining has raised many questions surrounding its potential environmental impacts and how to assess the impacts’ significance. Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the International Seabed Authority (ISA) is charged with ensuring effective protection of the marine environment as part of its responsibilities for managing mining in seabed areas beyond national jurisdiction (the Area) on behalf of humankind.
Among the tools used to measure sustainability in aquaculture, sets of indicators allow a holistic view of a system in its social, environmental, and economic dimensions. Approaches that align indicators with models such as the Drivers-Pressure-State-Impact-Response (DPSIR) framework can improve understanding of this sustainability. This study evaluated the sustainability of cage production systems for Nile tilapia in the Santa Cruz Reservoir, to determine whether a set of indicators used with the DPSIR conceptual model was effective to study the sustainability of the system.
This book chapter advances SDGs 3 and 14 by detailing the most common aquatic contaminants.
This book chapter advances SDGs 14 and 3 by discussing the history of aquatic contamination, highlighting major cases where aquatic contamination has become an issue and cases where efficient solutions to environmental problems have been reached.