Two of the world’s most-respected marine-focused organisations – PADI and SeaLegacy – have joined forces to accelerate much-needed ocean protection.
The first initiative of this multi-year collaboration kicks off this month, with a grassroots campaign developed to spark immediate and meaningful change for our blue planet.
Scientific research indicates that protecting at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030 (i.e. 30×30) is critical to restore the health of the ocean, reverse existing adverse impacts, increase resilience to climate change, and sustain ecosystem services to humanity. But despite the clear need for increased protection, less than 5% of the global ocean is fully protected in no-take reserves.
The ocean is facing growing challenges triggering a global advocacy movement urging immediate and lasting change to protect it for current and future generations. Illustrating the power of partnerships to amplify exponential change, PADI and SeaLegacy are harnessing one another’s strengths–leveraging the power of media, storytelling, and advocacy to compel ocean activists across the planet to take action and urge world leaders to step up to protect at least 30% of the ocean by 2030.
“PADI is fueling a movement of one billion torchbearers to create ocean change, and we are thrilled to partner with like-minded organisations to scale this critical mission,” says Drew Richardson, CEO of PADI Worldwide. “Working with SeaLegacy not only allows us to rapidly grow the global torchbearer community, but also empower us all with meaningful ways to take real, positive action to protect our blue planet – and all life that calls it home.”
This April, PADI and SeaLegacy will launch a joint 30×30 campaign designed to generate immediate action from a combined global audience that includes millions of ocean enthusiasts, divers, snorkelers and conservationists looking for means to protect what they love.
The goal of the PADI and SeaLegacy 30×30 campaign is to urge world leaders to adopt the 30X30 target, calling for conservation of “at least 30% of sea areas globally through effective, equitably managed, ecologically representative and well-connected systems of protected areas.” PADI and SeaLegacy will be pushing for an agreement to be reached at the UN Biodiversity COP15 in the third quarter of 2022 in Kunming, China.
“In a time when so many people around the world are concerned about climate change, biodiversity loss, sea level rise, and so much more, we need to channel that anxiety into action,” says Cristina Mittermeier, president of SeaLegacy. “People everywhere are looking for hope and opportunities to have real impact, and one great way to get involved is to sign our petition to have the 30×30 target adopted at the Convention of Biodiversity.”
With their shared 30×30 goal, SeaLegacy and PADI will work to increase meaningful marine protection around the world, including the creation and effective management of marine protected areas (MPAs) and biodiversity conservation, while collaborating with local communities and leaders on the frontlines of the climate crisis.
“The ocean offers so many of the critical climate solutions we need, and MPAs are a major piece of that. MPAs not only protect local species and ecosystems, but sequester carbon, increase coastal resilience, and revitalize local economies. We know that change is possible in this decade, and this kind of action will help us make major strides toward healing our ocean and saving our planet,” says Mittermeier.
Photo credit: Cristina Mittermeier, Paul Nicklen and Shawn Heinrichs