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Urgent Call for Ocean Protection:Report Highlights Marine Life Crisis

The latest State of the World’s Migratory Species report by the UN Environment Programme underscores the precarious state of marine life. 

Whales, sharks, rays, turtles, and seabirds are all in jeopardy, with fish facing the greatest peril due to overexploitation and habitat loss caused by human activities.

fishing nets
Photo by Jack White on Unsplash

Sharks are among the marine species facing severe threats due to overexploitation and habitat degradation. As apex predators, they play a critical role in maintaining marine ecosystem balance. However, overfishing, driven by demand for their fins, meat, and other products, poses a significant risk to their survival. 

shark fins drying in the sun
Photo by Alex Hofford

Pollution and habitat loss further exacerbate these challenges. Because sharks are migratory, they are vulnerable to threats across vast ocean territories. Urgent action is needed to implement robust conservation measures to protect shark populations and ensure the health of marine ecosystems they inhabit.

Highlighting the pressing need for action, the report draws attention to the threats posed by destructive fishing practices and pollution to marine ecosystems.

A proposed solution involves the establishment of a network of fully protected ocean sanctuaries in international waters, as outlined in the Global Ocean Treaty. However, there is a call for governments, to promptly ratify the treaty to implement necessary safeguards.

Urgency is stressed to prioritise ocean protection and heed public sentiment in favour of stronger measures to safeguard marine life.

Recent actions, such as engagements with leaders in the commercial fishing sector, raise concerns about prioritising short-term gains over long-term conservation efforts. Immediate action is urged to preserve marine ecosystems and prevent further depletion of species populations.



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