More Than 100 Countries Call for Protecting at Least 30% of the Global Ocean by 2030

At U.N. event, momentum builds to deliver and finance ambitious conservation goal

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More Than 100 Countries Call for Protecting at Least 30% of the Global Ocean by 2030
Sea stars
The proposed 30 by 30 ocean target will help halt and reverse biodiversity loss and enhance climate change resilience.
Grant Thomas Ocean Image Bank

Editor’s note: This page was updated on Oct. 13, 2021, to reflect a change in the list of countries that support a goal to protect at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030.

More than 100 countries have publicly committed to support a goal to protect at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030, often referred to as “30 by 30.”

The milestone was shared Wednesday during the high-level “Transformative Action for Nature and People” event during the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. This announcement is a sign of the momentum building to safeguard the ocean for people, climate, and nature.

The key objectives of the proposed 30 by 30 ocean target are to help halt and reverse biodiversity loss and enhance climate change resilience, which in turn should deliver positive outcomes for all people. The goal is one of 21 “action targets” under negotiation for inclusion in the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. The U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity is negotiating the plan, which will detail a new 10-year strategy that seeks to put humanity on a path toward “living in harmony with nature.”

The Pew Charitable Trusts is among many organizations encouraging countries to ensure the final text is ambitious, inclusive, and science-based when it is adopted by members at the 15th Conference of the Parties in China in April and May 2022.

To date, the following countries have publicly supported a goal to protect 30% of the global ocean by 2030; this list may change periodically based on which governments have committed to this marine protection target.

Albania, Angola, Antigua, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bhutan, Botswana, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Canada, Chad, Chile, Colombia, Comoros, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Côte d’Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Grenada, Guatemala, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Guyana, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kiribati, Liberia, Luxembourg, Marshall Islands, Mauritania, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Netherlands, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Niue, Norway, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Portugal, Republic of Congo, Republic of Maldives, Romania, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Samoa, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Vanuatu.

As countries take action to implement 30 by 30, it is critically important to ensure that marine protections are effective and robust, and that the approach to this effort is inclusive and respects the rights of Indigenous peoples and local communities. This goal is achievable, and there is a conservation toolbox of solutions that can help deliver it. Protecting the high seas and ecologically important and biologically diverse areas such as the Antarctic Southern Ocean can also help deliver a healthy global ocean—one that benefits ecosystems, fisheries, and communities.  

Recognizing that additional resources are needed to fund conservation of our planet, it is imperative to ensure that sustained financing is secured for the long-term health and resilience of critical ecosystems. To that end, the $1 billion pledged Sept. 20 by the Bezos Earth Fund, as well as the $5 billion pledged Wednesday by nine organizations as part of the “Protecting Our Planet Challenge,”are vital contributions to financing global conservation of our land and ocean.

No one organization or country can achieve these goals alone. Pew is working with many partners and through alliances to build on this momentum for ambitious action to secure 30 by 30, deliver protections to conserve biodiversity in the most important ocean environments, and ensure that the international community collaborates with all stewards of the environment.

Masha Kalinina coordinates The Pew Charitable Trusts’ cross-campaign efforts with the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.

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