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CCICED Annual General Meeting - Environmental Governance for the Ocean Forum Held in Beijing


On November 2, 2018, the CCICED Annual General Meeting -Ocean Forum was held at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing. The forum was co-chaired by Mr. Vidar Helgesen, the CCICED Vice Chairperson, Special Envoy to the High-level Panel on Building a Sustainable Ocean Economy; Former Minister, Ministry of Climate and Environment of the Kingdom of Norway, and Prof. SU Jilan, Academician of Chinese Academy of Sciences, honorary Director General of the Second Institute of Oceanology, the State Oceanic Administration, Ministry of Natural Resources. The forum discussed three topics: the status and challenges of marine biodiversity conservation, marine land-source pollution and impact, and marine environmental management strategies and actions. There was also an innovative and insightful presentation related to plastic pollution contributed by a young scientist, paving the way for the inclusion of more young voices in future. Participants of the forum made in-depth exchanges on the innovation of marine environmental governance system and the construction of marine ecological civilization.

The marine ecosystem faces enormous challenges caused by human activities, in the ocean, but also on land. How to guide the marine ecological environmental protection by concept of ecological civilization, promote the sustainable development of the ocean and the harmony between people and the ocean, is not only the problem that China needs to solve, but also the common welfare of the international community. Academician Su Jilan pointed out in his speech that, oceans are the very foundation of human beings, providing many provisioning, regulating and supporting services. Oceans and coastal areas are major contributors to the global economy and fundamental to global wellbeing. Human activity, particularly over the last few decades, has pushed oceans to their limit. Growing populations and economies seriously degraded parts of the marine environment, especially coastal ecosystems. Marine pollution, including excessive load of nutrient, plastic wastes, and emerging pollutants such as Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) and pesticides, is one of the major concerns.

Mr. Vidar Helgesen stressed and emphasized in particular the need for a knowledge-based, integrated and holistic management of the oceans supporting and maintaining the ecosystem and ecosystem services. A proper balance between use and protection is a fundamental prerequisite for further development of a sustainable blue economy, in particular in light of the dramatic pressures on the marine environment caused by the ongoing global climate changes.    

The meeting agreed that, by adopting measures of ecological civilization, China can embark on the path of harmonious development between human beings and the oceans, promote the protection and green development of the ocean, and enhance the prosperity of the marine economy. Such measures require that China take a comprehensive, ecosystem-based, integrated and knowledge-based approach to the management of marine and coastal development, and contribute to the establishment of a modern global ocean governance mechanism.
The theme forum was hosted by the EU delegation to China. There were more than 60 participants at the forum, including Chinese and foreign CCICED committee members, CCICED special policy study project team members, representatives of NGOs and observers attending the CCICED 2018 Annual General Meeting.

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