Last Updated on Friday, 30 September, 2022 at 3:30 pm by Andre Camilleri
Labour MEP Cyrus Engerer has been appointed as the Socialist and Democrats’s negotiator on Ocean Governance and Biodiversity.
Upon his appointment, Engerer explained how he would be pushing for an ambitious call to first and foremost encourage the international community to rethink its relationship with the oceans, and think more like Islands in this regard.
“Islands understand the Ocean and Ocean Governance at a deep and personal level. Not only do we understand the great importance of the ocean to our global ecosystems and the dangers arising from damaging our ocean, but we also understand the solutions needed. Islands are undoubtedly the most affected regions in the world by climate change and overdevelopment. But there are solutions to these issues, and as island states we know these well”, said Engerer.
The Resolution calls for the European Union and the Global community to adopt ambitious targets when it comes to ensuring our seas are healthy. This includes guaranteeing a pollution-free ocean, and that marine biodiversity is protected and enhanced. The Resolution also recognises the clear potential of the Ocean in the fight against climate change, with references to the potential of the Ocean to absorb carbon from our atmosphere.
Through the resolution being debated, the European Parliament must adopt language which recognises the need to infuse the concepts of sustainability of our oceans and the protection of jobs, including retraining and reskilling workers in coastal communities – thus boosting economies with the creation of new, sustainable industries. All this, while ensuring further investment into the blue circular economy, as well as a just transition when it comes to mitigating climate change- especially for islands, which face an insularity that mainland EU Member States do not.
“The way forward for our world is to ensure that Oceans are central to our policies. We need to take a two way approach- both protecting the Ocean and utilising the Ocean for our own protection. We need to readapt our thinking and think of our planet as one world- and not as a planet which is made up of the ocean and the land separately. We must focus on the concept of One Health, One Planet and understand that the health of human kind, animals and the environment must go hand in hand. But all of this does not happen without political will at the international level, not just at a European one, ” Engerer concluded.
The resolution is scheduled to be voted on in the next plenary session of the European Parliament in Strasbourg, next week.