Razan Al Mubarak Discusses the Ocean's Role in Climate Mitigation in The National Editorial

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In a recent editorial published in The National on June 7th, Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP28 and President of IUCN, highlighted the vital role of oceans in combating climate change. She emphasized, "The ocean is truly the 'lungs' of the earth, absorbing a quarter of all carbon dioxide emissions and capturing 90 percent of the excess heat generated by them." This assertion underscores the ocean's critical function as the largest carbon sink and its importance in global climate mitigation strategies.

Ms. Al Mubarak addressed the significant underfunding of ocean conservation. She noted that SDG14, which focuses on the sustainable use of oceans, receives the least support among the UN Sustainable Development Goals. She called for increased funding to protect vital blue carbon ecosystems, such as mangroves, essential for carbon storage, stating, "A healthy ocean is vital to protect us from the worst impacts of climate change."

The editorial also reflected on initiatives launched at COP28, such as the Ocean Breakthroughs and the Mangrove Breakthrough, which aim to restore and protect 15 million hectares of mangroves globally by 2030. Ms. Al Mubarak urged for ongoing action and collaboration, particularly from nations in the Arabian Gulf, to leverage their rich marine biodiversity for the blue economy.

Razan Al Mubarak's editorial serves as a call to action to sustainably manage our oceans, emphasizing their pivotal role in our climate strategy. As significant global environmental milestones approach, including COP29 and the UN Ocean Conference in 2025, her message is clear: "Let’s work together to protect our best friend – and ourselves." This call to action stresses the importance of safeguarding our most significant ally in climate mitigation—the ocean—to protect our environment and our future.

Link to editorial.