COVID-19 and the future of ocean sustainability

The ocean has been and will be heavily impacted by the global pandemic in 2020. In this workshop process diverse actors came together from across Australia and Indonesia through Africa to the Americas to consider how long term impacts may unfold and the factors and choices we can take to lead towards a better or worse outcome for ocean sustainability.

The COVID-19 and the Future of Oceans Sustainability process brought together 25 diverse stakeholders from across the globe to understand how COVID-19 is impacting ocean sustainability. The contributors to the process and co-creators of this report all work extensively in ocean sustainability and together provided a systemic perspective. The stakeholders who came together for this process come from 15 countries across 6 continents, from the non- profit sector, government, and the private sector, and work in diverse domains of ocean sustainability.

See the report and web-page on the Sustainable Oceans Lab page.

Surprisingly, many participants focused on the positive opportunities from the crisis, in terms of re-imagining the future and the phrase #BuildForwardBetter. Our key findings focused on six strategic areas where actors could reinforce positive trends and turn negatives into positives:

The consultation was run as part of the Sustainable Oceans Lab, which ran full lab procession 2015-2016 and a regional Transformative Scenarios Process in the Western Indian Ocean/Northern Mozambique Channel in 2017-2018.

Reos Partners and CORDIO East Africa started this new lab process as our part to address the COVID-19 crisis and how it affects oceans, and more materials will become available on these pages as we push forward from this starting point.