One Ocean Forum, the first Italian event dedicated to the ocean sustainability kicks off today
Two days of debate, speeches, first-hand accounts and working sessions to raise awareness of the state of the marine ecosystem and to spread a culture of environmentalism
His Highness The Aga Khan will deliver His welcome remarks
Among today’s guests: Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, holder of the world freediving record Davide Carrera and American sailor Paul Cayard
Milan, 3 October 2017 – Milan this morning saw the kick-off of ONE OCEAN Forum, an event conceived by Yacht Club Costa Smeralda and wanted for a long time by Princess Zahra Aga Khan. It is the first Italian event of this kind dedicated to innovative projects aiming at preserving the marine environment and promoting practical actions and solutions.
The Forum is partnered with UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission and SDA Bocconi Sustainability LAB, and has the support of numerous prestigious bodies, such as BVI- British Virgin Islands, Ministry for the Environment, Municipality of Milan, Autonomous Region of Sardinia, CONI, SYBAss, Nautica Italiana, UCINA, Confindustria Nautica, Genoa Boat Show and the Caprera Sailing Centre.
The topics of the forum want to drive the attention of the audience, institutions and opinion-makers to the health of the oceans and the consequences that phenomena such as pollution and global warming have both on the marine ecosystems and on the health of the mankind.
It has been calculated that by 2050 the rate plastic-fish will be 1:1 (Report ELLEN MACARTHUR FOUNDATION, 2016). Up to now, 3 billion people depend on the marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods (Sustainable Development Goals, UNITED NATIONS).
ONE OCEAN’s program is developed on 4 pressing issues, around which the most important global experts are debating:
- Marine Litter & Pollution, namely the enormous quantities of waste present in all the oceans of the planet. Every year more than 8 million tonnes of plastic are disseminated in the ocean. In addition to damaging the marine life, they end up in the food chain as micro-plastics fragments of 2-5 mm.
- Climate and Global Changes, responsible for the acidification of the waters and its consequential effects on the well-being and conservation of oceanic habitats
- the implementation of Blue Technologies as opportunities for the development of the maritime economy, using innovation and research as the basis for new production and commercial policies.
- Ocean Literacy, namely the dissemination of a culture that leads to understanding the influence the ocean has on our lives and the influence our choices and behavior have on the ocean.
The welcome remarks will be given by the President of YCCS, His Highness The Aga Khan. “It is our responsibility to reduce the environmental pollution, in order to recreate the harmony between then mankind and the nature. The yacht clubs, whose ties with the sea are essential, must feel the duty to support such projects as the One Ocean Forum”.
Princess Zahra Aga Khan commented: “Experts tell us that we have reached the point of no return, and that at the same time we can make a real difference by adopting a responsible approach and sustainable actions. We need to make our best to leave the ocean, as we have known it, to our future generations”.
Irina Bokova, UNESCO General Director, made her contribution via a video message: ”Our life depends on the ocean. The 2017 represents a milestone given all the actions undertaken to preserve the sea. One Ocean is an event that wants to facilitate the creation of new synergies among public institutions, researchers, ONG and private investors”. This message was followed by Vladimir Ryabinin, Executive Secretary of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, who outlined the strategic measures undertaken by UN in regard to the sustainable development.
The other guests of the morning were François Bailet, Senior Legal Officer at the UN’s Ocean Affairs and Law of the Sea division, and Anne de Carbuccia, a Franco-American artist documenting the conditions of our planet through her evocative photographic shots, alternated on the stage in the morning.
The afternoon session sees the sharing of some best practices and corporate success stories that elevated the Blue Economy to a virtuous business model by Nino Tronchetti Provera of Ambienta, Giulio Bonazzi of Aquafil, Alfonso Saibene Canepa of Canepa, Daniela Ducato of Geolana and Erin Smith of Ocean Sole.
The forum continues with the speeches by Sam Dupont, a researcher in marine ecophysiology at the University of Gothenburg, on the phenomenon of ocean acidification and the connected consequences on marine ecosystems; by Davide Carrera, a former free immersion apnoea world-record holder; and by globally renowned American sailorPaul Cayard: addresses and tales that witness the magic and the beauty of the sea through the narration of deep and long-lasting bonds.
The afternoon session also focused on the LABs: 7 thematic panels where delegates of the promoting companies, academic students, experts, international researches, journalists and NGOs can debate among themselves, with the aim to establish a common marine preservation roadmap to follow from different thematic groups.
On the second day, tomorrow, the event will see the participation of Maria Cristina Fossi, Professor of Ecology and Ecotoxicology at the University of Siena and Scientific Director of the Biomarker Laboratory of the Department of Physical and Earth Sciences, as well as journalist-explorer Paul Rose.
The signing of the Charta Smeralda, a code of conduct for entities that promote and support sea-related activities, such as marinas and yacht clubs, as well as national, international and supranational public and private institutions and organizations sharing its scope and content, will mark the closing of the event.With the goal of keeping the collective focus on the importance of safeguarding the sea and on the need to educate for a correct environmental culture, the One Ocean Forum aims to become an ongoing program and platform for discussion, holding true to its belief that “Partnership is the new leadership”.
The Forum was conceived by YCCS in collaboration with FeelRouge Worldwide Shows, a strategic partner in charge of general organization and content development, and with the support of Rolex and Audi, YCCS's historic partners, Aquafil, Luxury Living Group, Dilbar, Intercos, Carrier Foundation, Perini Navi, Pantecnica, Riccardo Catella Foundation, Sipa, Dompé, Biofarma and Immobilsarda.
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