Ocean Action Hub

[ SDG Target 14.1 ] By 2025, prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution.

Definition

Land-based sources (such as agricultural run-off, discharge of nutrients and pesticides and untreated sewage including plastics) account for approximately 80% of marine pollution, globally. Marine habitats worldwide are contaminated with man-made debris. Oil spills remain a concern, though actual spills have decreased steadily for several decades. SDG 14.1 calls for the prevention and significant reduction of marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution, by 2025.

Excessive nutrients from sewage outfalls and agricultural runoff have contributed to the increasing incidence of low oxygen (hypoxic) areas known as dead zones, where most marine life cannot survive, resulting in the collapse of some ecosystems. There are now close to 500 dead zones with a total global surface area of over 245,000 km², roughly equivalent to that of the United Kingdom. The excess nitrogen can also stimulate the proliferation of seaweeds and microorganisms and cause algal blooms. Such blooms can be harmful (HABs), causing massive fish kills, contaminating seafood with toxins and altering ecosystems.

Litter can accumulate in huge floating garbage patches or wash up on the coasts. Light, resistant plastics float in the Ocean, releasing contaminants as they break down into micro-particles that animals mistake for food. Fish and birds can choke on these particles, get sick as they accumulate toxins in their stomachs, or become entangled in larger debris.

As the world saw in 2010, the Gulf of Mexico deep-water oil spill had a devastating effect on the entire marine ecosystem, as well as the populations that depend on the marine areas for their livelihoods. Smaller oil spills happen every day, due to drilling incidents or leaking motors, negatively impacting birds, marine mammals, algae, fish and shellfish.

SOURCE: UNESCO website

Latest

28 August 2020 - Small island nations face an existential and developmental threat from ship-source pollution endangering their vulnerable marine ecosystems and ocean economies.

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24 Aug 2020 - Digital platform Uplink is announces it's Ocean Cohort of 12 innovations tackling the biggest issues facing our seas.

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17 Aug 2020 - "Even if we could collect all the plastic in the oceans—which we can't—it's really difficult to recycle, especially if plastic fragments have floated for a long time and been

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The theme for this year is “Sustainable shipping for a sustainable planet," which provides an

Event Date:
24/09/2020 - 09:30
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12 Aug 2020 - Plastic litter threatens the environment, human health, and business in marine and coastal settings.

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6 Aug 2020 - The fight against plastic pollution is being hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, as the use of disposable masks, gloves and other protective equipment soars, but UN agencies and par

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4 Aug 2020 - The Guardian - Dumped and ageing fibreglass boats are breaking up, releasing toxins and microplastics across the world.

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27 Jul 2020 - The Guardian - Plastic waste flowing into the oceans is expected to nearly triple in volume in the next 20 years, while efforts to stem the tide have so far made barely a den

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23 Jul 2020 - The Economist - As the world produces more protective equipment—and gorges on takeaways—pity the oceans

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21 Jul 2020 - Applications are open!

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15 Jul 2020 - TIME - "As we restart the economy, this is the chance to reset our goals for a healthy ocean [...] We have a very narrow window of opportunity where we can actually still be effective. Twenty years from now, it will be too late,” says Carlos M. Duarte, a Spanish marine biologist at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia.

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12 Jun 2020 - Artificial limbs made out of plastic water bottles could save healthcare providers millions and help tackle

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