LISBON, June 28 (The CONNECT) - India has proposed to establish Sustainable Coastal and Ocean Research Institute (SCORI) to meet the needs and aspirations of the Pacific Island Countries (PIC).
Delivering the India statement at the UN Ocean Conference at Lisbon, India’s Minister for Earth Sciences, Dr Jitendra Singh said pointed out that the country partners with many countries on the areas of Integrated Ocean Management and framework for marine spatial plans for sustainable development and conservation of ecosystems.
The Minister assured the world community that India is committed to protect at least 30 % of "our" lands, waters and oceans, and thus adhere to its commitment of 30X30 by 2030.
India had joined the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, which was initiated at the “One Planet Summit” in Paris in January 2021, which aims to promote an international agreement to protect at least 30% of the world's land and ocean by 2030.
Dr Jitendra Singh assured the Ministers, Delegates and Representatives from more than 130 Countries participating in the 5-day conference that India will also provide science and innovation- based solutions for the implementation of SDG-Goal 14 through partnerships and environmentally friendly solutions. Goal 14 calls for Conservation and Sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources.
Focusing on the theme of the conference “Scaling up Ocean Action based on Science and Innovation for the implementation of Goal 14: Stocktaking, Partnerships and Solutions”, Dr Jitendra Singh reiterated that India will take all possible measures to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal-14, which addresses some of the challenges faced by the life under water. He informed that the Government headed by PM Modi has taken up several initiatives, programmes and policy interventions through different Ministries and Departments to protect the marine and coastal ecosystems, mangroves and coral reefs.
He said, India is committed to the “Coastal Clean Seas Campaign” and has declared that India will soon achieve a complete ban on single use plastics. One of the best examples is in phasing out of plastic /polyethylene bags and promoting the alternatives such as usage of cotton/jute cloth bags, he said. The research to gather scientific data and information on Marine Litter in different matrices viz., coastal waters, sediments, biota and beaches as a part of formulating a National Policy has already begun, the Minister added.
Dr Jitendra Singh said, India has unveiled its vision for the next decade, listing thereby the ten most important dimensions of India’s growth till 2030. The Government is in the process of unveiling the “Blue Economic Policy of India”.
Deep Ocean Mission is being implemented by Ministry of Earth Sciences with six thematic areas, which includes development of Ocean Climate Change Advisory Services to address climate resilience, exploration and conservation of deep-sea biodiversity, development of technologies for harnessing ocean resources and capacity building.
Dr Jitendra Singh told the member States that India has well established collaboration and partnerships with UN Agencies and Research Institutions for bridging the methodology and data gaps on SDG indicators and working towards UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, 2021–2030, for clean, healthy, productive, predictive, safe and accessible ocean.
Dr Jitendra Singh thanked Portugal and Kenya, co- hosts of the conference and greatly appreciated the much needed initiative of the President of United Nations for mobilising support for the timely actions on this important Sustainable Development Goal just after the abetment of the Covid-19 pandemic.