Week 1: Information series for the State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 Report

Led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), World Environment Day is celebrated annually since 1973 by millions of people across the world. World Environment Day this year highlights climate action, nature action and pollution action with the theme ‘Only one Earth’ encouraging everyone, everywhere to live sustainably. This World Environment Day, Victoria’s Commissioner for Environmental Sustainability invites you to explore Victoria’s State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 Report, as the first part of a 9-week information series.

Victoria’s State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 Report released in December 2021, shines a light on the health of our marine and coastal environments.

Commissioner, Dr Gillian Sparkes AM said, “The State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 Report reinforces the need for a catchment to reefs approach to Victoria’s policy and program interventions to protect and improve our coastal and marine environments.”

The report includes 215 assessments across 82 indicators, covering five regions and identifies five priorities for future focus. Over 9 weeks we will explore the report findings and themes, starting with the application of spatial information and Earth observation, and touching on international frameworks including the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the United Nations System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA).

The future priorities outlined in the report recognise that research outcomes will benefit from better integration and coordination of effort and from the adoption of new technologies and methods. “Through the science analysis for this report, we’ve identified five future priorities for marine and coastal management. One area of particular importance is the application of spatial information and Earth Observation to help identify and protect marine assets, and trialling models to represent the complex interlinkages between selected Sustainable Development Goal targets to understand interactions between Victoria’s environment, economy and community,” said Dr Sparkes.

Applying spatial information and Earth observation in this way will enable more frequent and extensive monitoring and will ultimately improve our understanding of the marine and coastal environment in Victoria and beyond.

“Investment in climate science and prediction is not a luxury; it is a necessity to protect the Australian people, protect our environment and position our economy for long-term growth. The return on that investment – knowing where the fires will be, when the drought will break, where the floods will occur or where an ecosystem will collapse is immeasurable”, as stated by Professor Andy Pitman, Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Climate Extremes, University of New South Wales in the Commissioner’s Science for Sustainable Development framework.

Other themes that will be explored during this nine-week series include water quality, litter and pollution, seafloor health, pests and invasive species, coastal hazards, climate and climate change, biodiversity, and communities and stewardship.

The State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 report coincides with the United Nations (UN) Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030). A decade of support for efforts to reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health and gather ocean stakeholders worldwide behind a common framework that will ensure ocean science can fully support countries in creating improved conditions for the Ocean. Victoria’s State of the Marine and Coastal Environment 2021 Report is registered as an activity under the UN Decade of Ocean Science.

Celebrate World Environment Day today and follow us on social media over the coming weeks to learn more about Victoria’s marine and coastal environment. #OnlyOneEarth

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Type: General news
Category: Commissioner
Tags: Environment