Addressing Challenges of Coastal Communities through Ocean Research for Developing Economies (ACCORD) (2020-2021)

Lead Research Organisation: National Oceanography Centre
Department Name: Science and Technology

Abstract

For developing coastal nations, the ocean provides food security and opportunities for sustainable economic growth through resource exploitation (e.g. fisheries and mineral extraction) and livelihood diversification (e.g. tourism, aquaculture, and blue carbon initiatives). The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has recently predicted that the ocean economy will reach around $US3 trillion by 2030, based on rapidly expanding new ocean industries combined with growth in traditional industries. Fisheries and aquaculture alone currently contribute US$100 billion per year and create 260 million jobs. These and other sectors of the marine economy are growing faster than the world economy. Coastal nations in south east Asia and the western Indian Ocean are all committed to the Blue Economy at the highest governmental level. At the same time, the ocean is under unprecedented stress from over-exploitation, pollution, declining biodiversity and climate change. It is essential that the realisation of these opportunities is managed sustainably and remains resilient to environmental, economic and climate pressures. The ACCORD programme is providing marine managers and policy-makers in nine developing coastal states with evidence and tools to manage the sustainable development and protection of their ocean assets. These countries are: Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Indonesia, Kenya, Malaysia, South Africa, Tanzania, and Vietnam. The proposed new work will build upon and consolidate previous work in these countries so as to increase the uptake of the scientific data and accelerate its translation into policy. In this new phase of ACCORD there will be an increased focus on stakeholder training and institutional capacity building where that has been identified as a priority by our overseas partners. Specifically, for Bangladesh we will help establish the rate of sedimentation and stability of the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna delta. For Malaysia, we will deliver a complete marine spatial planning system and will improve mangrove management policies. Our work will help achieve sustainable fisheries policies for Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa. In Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam we will train local stakeholders in the use of models and environmental data to inform local and national decision making. For all of our overseas partners, the tools, training and evidence resulting from our work will drive the sustainable growth of their marine economies and will promote economic, environmental and climate resilience.

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