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PH calls for further marine biodiversity protection

QUEZON CITY, (PIA) – In celebration of World Oceans Day on Wednesday, the Philippine government has joined the urgent call to recognize the importance of healthy oceans and address the global plastic pollution.

In a video message, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin, Jr. affirmed the Philippines’ commitment to Sustainable Development Goal 14 (SDG 14) to conserve and sustainability use of the oceans, seas and marine sources.

“The sea is livelihood and life for all Filipinos as a nation it is our definition as such. We are a people of water, we're a maritime and archipelagic country, with more than half our population, living and making a living in coastal zones," Locsin said

Locsin noted the world has yet to fully understand the treats of climate change, global warming, overfishing, microplastics, and mismanaged coastal development.

“We must stop the scourge of marine plastic pollution, protect marine biodiversity, especially in areas beyond national jurisdiction," Locsin emphasized.

Apart from microplastics and mismanaged coastal development, the maritime disputes also impact the world's oceans with artificial island-building and drilling activities devastating coral reefs and pushing marine ecosystems over the brink.

Locsin stressed that it takes collective action to achieve genuine change and create a new balance with the ocean.

Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), it stated that the problem of ocean space is closely interrelated and needs to be considered as a whole.

Meanwhile, in a statement, the United Nations considered the oceans as essential to food security and the health and survival of all life, power our climate and are a critical part of the biosphere.

The World Oceans Day reminds everyone that humanity has turned to the oceans for life and livelihood, but its resources are not unlimited and is vulnerable to many challenges. (JAFD/PIA-IDPD)

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Jastine Angelo Don

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