[Papeete, French Polynesia, May 15, 2022]
Marine Conservation Institute’s President, Dr. Lance Morgan, has been invited to present the highly regarded Marine Protected Atlas (MPAtlas) as part of the Blue Climate Summit convening this month at the Presidential Palace in French Polynesia. The objective of the conference is to highlight projects critical to solving the world’s most pressing ocean and climate issues and encourage investment to accelerate these projects.
Selected as one of six Ocean Protection Initiatives, Marine Conservation Institute’s MPAtlas curates and tracks the status of marine protected areas (MPAs) on the website MPAtlas.org. This provides a real-time snapshot of MPA coverage as countries increasingly commit to 30% protection of coastal and marine waters by 2030. Effective marine reserves are increasing recognized as an important tool for improving climate resiliency, thus tracking, and evaluating this progress is critical.
“The MPAtlas is the world’s first comprehensive global database of science-based MPA assessments, and it plays a crucial role in accurately assessing our global progress toward our shared goals for marine conservation,” says Dr. Morgan. “It’s an honor the MPAtlas is being highlighted at the Blue Climate Summit as a key factor for collaboration, investment and action.”
The Summit will be co-convened by H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco, Dr. Sylvia Earle, Marc Benioff, Nainoa Thompson, Laura Turner Seydel, and Dr. Andrew Forrest. Over 200 scientists, innovators, policymakers, business and financial experts, community leaders, and environmental and youth activists will be brought together to work on ocean and climate strategies. The event is an endorsed action of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development. Co-hosts and sponsors include the Government of French Polynesia, Atitia Center, Fare Natura, Centre de Recherches Insulaires et Observatoire de l’Environnement (CRIOBE), University of California Gump Research Station, Tetiaroa Society, The Brando, Pacific Beachcomber, Ponant, Air Tahiti Nui, Forsythia Foundation, and others to be announced.
“There has never been a more important or urgent time for the world to come together to address ocean protection and climate change. With tipping points rapidly approaching, we can’t afford to wait,” says Stan Rowland, Blue Climate Initiative CEO.
Effectively protected reserves are not only climate refuges for marine life, but they can also help sequester carbon and enhance resilience. The Marine Conversation Institute uses the MPAtlas tool in conjunction with its annual Blue Parks Award to recognize outstanding marine protected areas (MPAs) that truly protect marine biodiversity through the adoption of widely accepted science-based standards.