The Nereus Program will hold a side event at the UN General Assembly’s preparatory meeting for the UN Ocean Conference in June. The meeting is to convene on February 15 and 16 at the UN Headquarters in New York.

Nereus will be facilitating a side event on February 16 entitled: “Co-Benefits of Achieving SDG Goal 14 to Wider SDGs: Prioritizing Action Given Climate Change and Social Inequity”. Director of Policy Yoshitaka Ota, Fellow Gerald Singh (UBC) and Director of Science William Cheung will deliver presentations on how climate change, marine governance, and equity all relate to UN Sustainable Development Goals. A panel discussion moderated by Program Manager and Research Associate Andres Cisneros-Montemayor will follow, with guests from the UNDP and Coastal Policy and Humanities Research.

6:15 PM – 7:30 PM

Co-Benefits of Achieving SDG Goal 14 to Wider SDGs: Prioritizing Action Given Climate Change and Social Inequity

Background: The targets of Sustainable Development Goal 14 focus on resource management, environmental protection, and development for coastal communities. We show that achieving these targets contribute to the achievement of other SDG targets and in some cases are required to achieve other SDG targets. These associated co-benefits of achieving ocean sustainability are not necessarily constrained to ocean ecosystems, making ocean sustainability a necessary and wide-reaching priority for global sustainable development.

Description: This side event will discuss the changing oceans and what it means for achieving SDGs. It will also outline the co-benefits of achieving the various ocean targets, outlining a rapid assessment tool that can help policymakers prioritize ocean targets based on desired co-benefits. The assessment can also help highlight which co-benefits across ocean targets, and other environmental, economic, and social equity goals are immediately associated with achieving specific ocean targets and which ones depend on implementation strategy. We will also highlight the biophysical and social dynamics affecting resource production and distribution due to climate change that influence these co-benefits, as well as how policy can help ensure co-benefits are realized, such as fishery management for poverty alleviation.

Contribution: The information provided at this event will promote our understanding the necessary factors to implement SDG goal 14 and the considerations to promote co-benefits across SDGs.

Structure: The side-event will constitute three presentations and a panel discussion and Q&A (including the presentation speakers). The program is as follows:
Dr. Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor, Nippon Foundation Nereus Program Program Manager & Research Associate, Moderator
Dr. Gerald Singh, Nippon Foundation Senior Nereus Fellow, Presenter and Panelist – “Linking the Oceans Across Sustainable Development Goals for Prioritizing Environmental and Equity Concerns”
Dr. William Cheung, Presenter and Panelist, Associate Professor at Institute for Oceans and Fisheries, University of British Columbia – “Changing Oceans: Redistribution of Living Marine Resources Under Climate Change”
Dr. Yoshitaka Ota, Nippon Foundation Nereus Program Policy Director, Presenter and Panelist – “Marine Governance for Representation and Sustainability”
Marjo Vierros, Coastal Policy and Humanities Research, Panelist
Jamison Ervin, United Nations Development Programme, Panelist

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