As Our Ocean 2023 kicks off today, March 2, in Panama, a group of high-level government officials, as well as senior leaders from the private sector, philanthropy, civil society and academic institutions will discuss ways to better work together to protect our ocean, the climate, and marine life.
Commitments made at the annual Our Ocean conferences are critical to supporting these goals.
Last year, at the 2022 Our Ocean Conference in Palau, the Shark Conservation Fund (SCF) launched a new commitment of $25 million over five years to help ocean health and biodiversity through shark and ray conservation. That effort includes expanding marine protected areas (MPAs), protecting more shark and ray species, working to ensure sustainable trade, and establishing stronger fishing regulations.
We are looking forward to learning about the advancement of initiatives and programs from SCF and other organizations that will emerge from this year’s conference, and — with the spotlight on Panama — about the government and philanthropic commitments that support the important work of partners of the Islas Secas Foundation, The Moore Charitable Foundation’s Panama affiliate, and other conservation non-profits focused on this biodiverse region.
The Islas Secas Foundation supports sustainable fisheries planning and implementation in the Gulf of Chiriquí through improved fisheries monitoring and support of the landings data collection system of the Aquatic Resources Authority of Panama. Since 2011, the foundation has supported long-term monitoring of humpback whales migrating to a critical nursery area in the Gulf of Chiriquí, identifying one thousand individual whales over the years.
In Panama and around the world, the ocean not only provides a home for marine life; the ocean houses 80 percent of all life on Earth, provides food and water for more than three billion people, and is a source of global trade. The Moore Charitable Foundation looks forward to participating in Our Ocean Conference again this year and continuing to do our part to help ensure that our ocean remains healthy and sustainable for generations to come.