Ocean Summit in Brest: USA joins initiative against plastic waste – Politics

In the French port city of Brest, US Climate Protection Commissioner John Kerry used emphatic words to call attention to the importance of the oceans. On Friday in Brittany, Kerry explained in his speech at the “One Ocean Summit” that the world’s oceans produce more than half the amount of oxygen, and there is an “inextricable relationship between climate protection and ocean protection.” “We can’t stop talking,” the former US Secretary of State demanded.

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Protection of the high seas is one area in which the global community is under pressure to act. These are areas outside of the 200-mile radius of coastlines – that is, most of the world’s oceans. There is chaos here because there are few international agreements. The result: overfishing in the high seas, and plastic waste destroying the high seas and their biodiversity.

So the international community, led by the United Nations, has been negotiating an agreement to protect the high seas since 2018. Negotiations have been temporarily suspended due to the pandemic. In Brest, 27 EU countries and 13 other countries – including Great Britain, India and Australia – joined in promoting the conclusion of the Convention on the Protection of Biological Diversity in the World’s Oceans as soon as possible. As European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen explained, the coalition of countries formed in Brest wants to work towards the signing of the agreement this year.

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“The United States and France stand shoulder to shoulder in protecting the environment for future generations,” Kerry said at the Brest summit organized by French President Emmanuel Macron. In Brest, the United States of America announced its support for an initiative by the European Union and about ten other countries aimed at negotiating an agreement against plastic waste in the oceans. Such an agreement should come under the supervision of the United Nations.

European Seas Renewal Program

European Union Commission President von der Leyen has announced a program to replenish the Five Seas that surround the European continent. Its volume should reach 500 million euros by 2030. In addition, von der Leyen called for the use of digitization to research the effects of climate change on the oceans. According to her, processes such as the change in ocean currents around Antarctica should be recorded on a platform accessible to scientists around the world from 2024.

Activists demonstrate against the conference

In Brest, 150 people took part in a demonstration organized by the environmental organization Greenpeace. The demonstrators accused the organizers of the “One Ocean Summit” of working with the high-level “Blue Washing” conference due to the lack of environmental policy in the participating countries.

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