People at a Workshop

In light on the new UN ocean treaty, Nereus member Harriet Harden-Davies and other co-authors highlight the need to address questions about capacity building as a key part of the development of new legal instruments under the BBNJ Agreement (United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea).

Bee on flower

Nereus member Matilda Petersson & Peter Stoett review articles published in the INEA journal to determine the lessons learnt in global biodiversity governance from 2000-2020. This work paints a picture of the main barriers to efficient biodiversity governance, and brings to light key issues to address in order to accelerate the process of protecting global biodiversity.

WTO building

In November 2021, the WTO (World Trade Organization), drafted and agreement on how to tackle harmful fisheries subsidies. Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor et al., provide a constructive critique to make this draft agreement more realistic and specific, and therefore applicable.

Tyler Eddy and several other Nereus members give yet another reason for the urgent need to meet climate change emission targets. Specifically, to reduce stress on coral reefs and restore their capacity to provide essential ecosystem services upon which millions of people rely on worldwide.

In spite of a pressing Sustainable Ocean Economy plan, Norway seems to be choosing a ‘business as usual’ route expanding oil and gas exploration. Accountability is crucial to attain sustainable ocean management by 2025.

The new Blue Paper “The Human Relationship With Our Ocean Planet”, co-authored by Dr. Yoshitaka Ota, commissioned by the Ocean Panel urges us to recognize the ocean’s role in not just providing material goods, but different forms of wellbeing including cultural identity, knowledge & sense of place and belonging.

Nereus Network members Katherine Seto and Quentin Hanich co-authored a new ground-breaking study “Illuminating dark fishing fleets in North Korea”, shedding light on illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing by Chinese fleets.

You can now watch a series of presentations given by Nereus Program research fellows describing their work in Nereus Program’s “Predicting Future Oceans” book. It is an encapsulation of a decade’s worth of ocean research done by Nereus Program, made freely available for the public to watch on YouTube.

ASU-CI Nexus is hiring a Post-Doctoral Fellow in sustainable oceans to help assess the global prevalence of human rights abuses in the seafood sector, with a focus on wild-capture fisheries. There is a May 1, 2020 deadline, and you can read the full description and access the application portal here.

Henrik Österblom and Colette Wabnitz are lead authors with many collaborators on a new Blue Paper for the High Level Panel for the Sustainable Ocean Economy (HLP), “Towards Ocean Equity”, which was also the focus of a recent webinar.

Nereus alumnus Robert Blasiak (Stockholm Resilience Centre) wrote an article for The Conversation about the newest publication he co-authored concerning the Blue Acceleration. You can read it and access the original article here.

Robert Blasiak and Henrik Österblom from the Stockholm Resilience Centre are part of a research team on a new publication in One Earth, “The Blue Acceleration: The Trajectory of Human Expansion into the Ocean.” You can read a short summary and access the article here.

Harriet Harden-Davies was one of five international experts invited to attend a high-level dialogue at the Nobel Institute in Oslo, 20-21 January 2020. The participants discussed marine genetic resources and benefit sharing, a current challenging issue in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ).

Nereus director (science) William Cheung (UBC) is a co-author on a new paper published in One Earth – “A Roadmap for Using the UN Decade of Ocean Science fr Sustainable Development in Support of Science, Policy, and Action”.

Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor is lead author with co-authors William Cheung, Muhammed Oyinlola, Gerald Singh, Wilf Swartz and Yoshitaka Ota on a new paper in Marine Policy – “Social equity and benefits as the nexus of a transformative Blue Economy: A sectoral review of implications”.

School of Marine and Environmental Affairs (SMEA) master’s student Karin Otsuka (University of Washington) wrote a blog about her experience at the Nippon Foundation Nereus Program Ocean Science Conference in September, as well as her research this past summer in Miyakojima, Okinawa, Japan.

Several Nereus Program participants are co-authors on a new paper just published in Nature Sustainability – “Towards a sustainable and equitable blue economy”. The authors recommend five priority areas to address to ensure a safe and just future global ocean economy.

Nereus director (science) William Cheung (UBC) and Thomas Frölicher (University of Bern) are co-authors on the newly released Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) Summary for Policymakers (SPM). It was approved and presented at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) on September 25, 2019.

The final Nippon Foundation Nereus Ocean Science Conference was recently held at Princeton University in New Jersey. Nereus Program research fellows, principal investigators, alumni, research associates and guests presented their research and reflected on the culmination of a decade of interdisciplinary research, and what the future holds for the oceans and society.

‘Predicting Future Oceans: Sustainability of Ocean and Human Systems Amidst Global Environmental Change’ is now available. It contains contributions from previous and current Nereus research fellows, associates and Principal Investigators, and covers a diverse span of ocean topics that include marine ecology, biodiversity, economics, fisheries management, seafood supply, climate change and many more.

A new report was just released from the workshop ‘From visions to scenarios for nature and nature’s contributions to people for the 21st century’, which was co-organized by Nereus Program, Peter Wall Institute, and the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services’s (IPBES).

Gerald Singh (UBC) and Andrés Cisneros-Montemayor (UBC) are both co-authors on the paper ‘Just Transformations in Sustainability’ in the journal Sustainability. The authors discuss social impacts that occur when changing social-ecological systems to become more sustainable, and how social justice considerations need to be central to these sustainability transformations.

July 17, 2019 | Social Responsibility

Nereus Principal Investigator Jack Kittinger (Conservation International, Arizona State University) is interviewed by Conservation International for their Human Nature Blog. You can read about his upbringing and inspiration to focus on sustainability and socially responsible seafood.

Nereus research associate Lydia Teh (UBC) writes a blog about her and other Nereus colleagues attending the Integrated Marine Biosphere Research Conference (IMBeR) Future Oceans Open Science Conference in Brest, France.

Nereus Fellow Zoë Kitchel (Rutgers University) writes about fellows Katy Seto, Julia Mason, Tiff-Annie Kenny, Becca Selden and Harriet Harden-Davies discussing critically important themes concerning equity and interdisciplinarity in relation to how the ocean is studied at the United Nations building, during an Open-ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea.

Nereus research fellow Tyler Eddy (University of South Carolina) recently published a short article in the journal Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, entitled ‘Climate change drowned out by plastic’.

Nereus Research Associate Colette Wabnitz (University of British Columbia) writes about attending the OceanVisions2019– Climate Summit, ‘Successes in resilience, adaptation, mitigation, and sustainability’ in Atlanta, Georgia on April 1-4th, 2019. She was co-chair of session VI – Integrated Modelling of Human and Climate Impacts on Ocean Systems. Fellow Becca Selden (Wellesley College) and Principal Investigator Malin Pinsky (Rutgers University) also attended.

Nereus Fellow Guillermo Ortuño Crespo (Duke University) writes about the first Global Planning Meeting of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development that he, fellow Harriet Harden-Davies (ANCORS, University of Wollongong) and policy director Yoshitaka Ota (University of Washington) attended in Copenhagen, Denmark on May 13-15th.

Nereus Program Manager/Research Associate Vicky Lam (University of British Columbia) wrote a blog about using a modeling approach and scenario analysis to help project future biodiversity and ecological scenarios and identify approaches to achieve long-term ecological, economic and socially sustainable ways to utilize marine resources.

Nereus’s Yoshitaka Ota (Director of Policy, University of Washington) and Wilf Swartz (Program Manager, Dalhousie University) are co-authors on a recent article, entitled ‘Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Practices of the Largest Seafood Suppliers in the Wild Capture Fisheries Sector: From Vision to Action’. In it they discuss a framework that identifies and categorizes seafood suppliers’ practices based on their approaches to issues in the wild capture fisheries sector.

Nereus Fellow Gerald Singh (University of British Columbia) recently had an article accepted into the journal People and Nature, entitled ‘Climate impacts on the ocean are making the Sustainable Development Goals a moving target traveling away from us’. A description of what to expect can be found here.

Nereus Fellow Tyler Eddy (University of South Carolina) recently published an article in Science, entitled ‘Plan S: Motivations of for-profit publishers’. In it, he discusses how the academic community should consider if a journal is open access, as well as the publisher’s profit motivations, when deciding which venue to publish their research.

March 31, 2019 | Social Responsibility

Nereus Research Associate Colette Wabnitz (UBC) and Fellow Tyler Eddy (University of South Carolina) attended the ‘Scenarios Forum 2019’ in Denver, CO on March 11-13, 2019. The forum hosted researchers from 41 countries across diverse disciplines who use climate change and sustainability scenarios and policy analysis to address current knowledge gaps.

Nereus researchers recently published an article in the open access journal PLoS ONE, entitled ‘The role of human rights in implementing socially responsible seafood’. You can read about the human rights violations in the seafood supply chain, reasons that contribute to their ongoing existence, and the authors’ proposals to improve the situation.

Nereus Research Associate Lydia Teh (University of British Columbia) writes a blog about the Bajau Laut in Malaysia and their struggles with fishing and way of life. She discusses the balance between marine biodiversity conservation and the social side of the Bajau Laut communities, to include securing basic rights such as food, shelter, education, and an adequate standard of living.

Nereus Fellow Tiff-Annie Kenny recently published an article in The Conversation, ‘Time and money – the biggest hurdles to healthy eating’. In the article, Tiff-Annie discusses how diet quality and health are socially stratified in developed countries.

October 13, 2018 | Social Responsibility

The Blue Economy consists of new marine-based industries that could provide alternatives for isolated or marginalized coastal communities to improve their well-being, and ocean health overall. However, this once equitable and sustainable concept has gradually lost its focus and is shifting toward more conventional industrial development.

September 14, 2018 | EconomicsSocial Responsibility

What happens when some of the most vulnerable populations on the planet are forced to flee the impacts of climate change without legal backing or clear definition of their rights?

On the surface, it’s a joy to see students take ownership of research and form a connection with the ocean. But now, against a backdrop of cuts to programs supporting low-income communities and erosion of policies protecting marine ecosystems, this kind of community-oriented science education is incredibly urgent.

The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals are an admirable set of targets set out to achieve a better world–but how do they interact with each other? Are some more pivotal to the success of all? Possibly.

Fish are being driven from their territory at a rate of 70 km per decade, which could accelerate. In a paper published in Science yesterday, an interdisciplinary team of Nereus researchers describe how many species will be pushed across national and other political boundaries in the coming decades.

The most prevalent seafood supply chain is the shortest one: from the ocean to the plate. And that’s the one we have the least information on. Small-scale fisheries are vital to coastal communities around the world, but their contributions to global harvests are severely underestimated.

The excitement around Sustainable Development Goals has faded somewhat since the United Nations meeting in 2015, and now comes the less inspiring dirty work of analysis and policy-setting to achieve them.

Behind the scenes with a determined group of human rights and fisheries experts working to bring social responsibility to the forefront of sustainable fishing.

This year, the Nereus Program will hold a seminar series with UBC’s Green College on “Adapting to global changes in oceans and fisheries.” This series will consist of seven lectures looking at how ocean changes are affecting environments and people.

Gerald Singh is a Nereus Fellow working with Yoshitaka Ota and Andres Cisneros-Montemayor and collaborating with the United Nations Development Programme. Gerald is characterizing the contribution of a sustainable ocean to achieving broad sustainable development goals.

September 14, 2016 | Social Responsibility

Jessica Spijkers is a PhD student at the Stockholm Resilience Centre (Sweden) and the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (Australia).

September 6, 2016 | FisheriesSocial Responsibility

The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) Part XIV provides for State cooperation with the view to promoting the development and transfer of marine science and technology. In addition, Article 202 refers to the provision of scientific and technical assistance to developing States for the protection and preservation of the marine environment. UNCLOS Part XIV and XIII refer to various forms of technology transfer including training, access to information, international scientific research cooperation and establishing national and regional marine science and technology centres.

Newly published in the Asia-Pacific Journal of Ocean Law and Policy is the paper “Dispute Resolution and Scientific Whaling in the Antarctic: The Story Continues” by Nereus Fellow Richard Caddell, Utrecht University. The paper looks at the implications of judgements by the International Court of Justice against Japanese scientific whaling in the Southern Ocean.

The Nereus Program was created to look at ocean questions that need input from experts on a range of topics from around the world. This past May 30 to June 3, nearly 50 of these experts gathered at the University of British Columbia for the Nereus Program Annual General Meeting.

In our current eco-friendly world, where climate change makes front-page news and the killing of a lion launches thousands of Facebook posts, how can a porpoise be nearing extinction and most of the world not even know of its existence?

Paris tends to relate to fisheries through its gourmet cuisine, which every so often includes fish. However, in December 2015, Paris was the epicenter of the renowned United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 21), which aimed at setting a target to curb Carbon emissions at a global scale.