The Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON) of the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) and the ProtectedSeas recognize the need for globally coordinated and sustained ocean and biodiversity observing and data collection systems. Such systems are urgently needed to systematically assess the state of the ocean’s biodiversity including biological resources and ecosystems, and how these will change in the future. This knowledge will provide the basis to more effectively conserve and sustainably use marine life both within and beyond areas of national jurisdiction.
A coordinated global ocean biodiversity observing system, especially one that includes regulatory data, would provide the data, information and knowledge needed to inform the progress towards, for example, the global 2030 targets of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (including SDG 14), targets and indicators of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and activities related to UNCLOS on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.
The agreement between MBON and the ProtectedSeas recognizes ongoing cooperation to reinforce ocean biodiversity observing capacity and use the best available resources and expertise. By collaborating with each other on data, biodiversity, and levels of fishing protection interpretive needs, we can improve data and information sharing. This will result in more robust data that can be used for evaluating and assessing existing and future MPAs.
ProtectedSeas believes it can help accelerate the analysis to better understand protection levels in existing marine protected areas, and beyond. Partnering will potentially facilitate more informed marine spatial planning needs for 30×30, and other future assessments. Virgil Zetterlind, Director of ProtectedSeas said: It has been our delight to share the regulatory data we have available for 21,700 Marine Protected Areas, in 200 countries and territories, and translated into 25 languages with MBON, as their team has been adept at amplifying this resource among its vast network of international practitioners.
The MBON is excited to collaborate with ProtectedSeas to support the international science and operations community to better understand marine protected areas through a regulatory perspective and inform map assessments, says Joana Soares, Executive Secretary of MBON and Project Officer of the AIR Centre. Together, we can amplify awareness of the ProtectedSeas Navigator program and the work MBON is tackling to help find solutions to conserve coastal and marine biodiversity and ecosystem services around the world.