INAUGURAL MEETING OF THE TAC TASK FORCE FOR THE OCEAN DECADE: PROGRESS AND PROPOSALS FOR A SUSTAINABLE FUTURE

At the Seventeenth Intergovernmental Meeting of the IOC Sub-Commission for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions (IOCARIBE-XVII), Member States approved the transformation of the Regional Planning Group into the newly formed Ocean Decade Task Force for the Tropical Americas and Caribbean Region (TAC). They also endorsed the establishment of a Decade Coordination Office for TAC within the IOCARIBE Secretariat, an initiative  that is currently in progress with regional stakeholders.

Share:
20231117 - Task Force TAC
17 November 2023

In line with these political decisions, the first meeting of the newly established TAC Ocean Decade Task Force took place on Friday, November 17, 2023. The meeting was facilitated by Dr. Lorna Veronica Inniss, Regional Coordinator of IOCARIBE. During this meeting, Julian Barbière, who leads the work of the Ocean Decade at the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC), provided an overview of the role of the IOC, the Ocean Decade, and the creation of the Ocean Decade Task Force. He emphasized the representation of multiple stakeholders and the importance of co-design to address challenges such as pollution, disaster risk management, biodiversity loss, and climate change.

 

The list of members of the Ocean Decade Task Force in the TAC region:

 

FIRST NAME

LAST NAME

NATIONALITY

REGION

Ruth

Spencer

Antigua and Barbuda

SIDS

Tania Michelle

Velasquez Campos

Honduras

Honduras / ECOP

Christa

 von Hillebrandt-Andrade

United States of America (USA)

USA /Caribbean

Edgard

Cabrera

Colombia

Colombia

Mariana

Andrade

Brazil

Brazil / ECOP

Carleen

Walker

United States of America (USA)

USA

Loreto

Duffy-Mayers

Barbadian/Irish

Barbados

Yasa

Belmar

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

SIDS

Jeffrey

Bernus

France

Caribbean

Silvia

Chacon

Costa Rica

Costa Rica

Tracey

Edwards

Jamaica

SIDS

Carmen

Lacambra Segura

Colombia

Colombia

Flávio

Nogueira Pinheiro de Andrade

Brazil

Brazil

Bruno

Sainte-Rose

France

Martinique

Tadzio

Berboets

Netherlands

Dutch Caribbean

 

To update on the status of Decade activities, Alison Clausen presented background information oo the Ocean Decade, its structure, challenges, and achievements to date. She also emphasized the importance of regional participation, national coordination, and the current call for actions of the Ocean Decade with a focus on the Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS). Clausen underscored the need for a robust engagement and outreach strategy, as well as supporting the development of programs and projects within the framework of the co-design of the Ocean Decade.

 

20231117 - Task Force TAC 2

 

Some proposals were discussed, as follows:

 

  • Under 136.2 – Proposal to build capacity of indigenous communities in Caribbean SIDS to understand and support Ocean Science: This proposal aims to build the capacity of indigenous communities in the Caribbean's Small Island Developing States to ensure their inclusion in ocean science and decision making. Also, it is proposed to gather traditional and local knowledge supporting the expansion of ocean science in the region.

  • Under 137.2 – Ocean Literacy for the Fisheries and Tourism Sectors in Caribbean SIDS, including expansion of the UNESCO Blue Schools Program: This proposal is to initiate ocean literacy programs focused specifically on the fisheries and tourism sectors in the Caribbean's Small Island Developing States, and would include expanding a "Blue School" program in the region.

  • Under 138.2 and 135.2 – Enhance technology transfer and capacity in Caribbean SIDS to contribute to ocean observing networks:Consideration is being given to improving technology transfer and capacity in the Caribbean's Small Island Developing States to contribute to ocean observing networks. This is framed within the construction of a regional ocean observation system.

  • Under 134.2 – Towards the development of a Caribbean SIDS Pollutants Observatory: Work is underway in developing a Pollutants Observatory for the Caribbean region. The proposal is to start with the same pilot sites being used for the ocean observation network and explore pollutant observation in these countries.

  • Under 133.2 – A Caribbean SIDS pilot project to study the impact of multiple ocean stressors: A pilot project is proposed in the region to study the impact of multiple ocean stressors at the aforementioned pilot sites. This would include not only observation networks but also issues related to extreme events and early warning.

 

The inaugural meeting of the Ocean Decade Task Force for the Tropical Americas and Caribbean Region marks a significant milestone in regional collaboration. With this new Task Force, the foundation has been laid to address crucial challenges, such as pollution and climate change. Members, representing diverse stakeholder groups, demonstrate a collective commitment to marine sustainability. The discussed proposals, from ocean literacy to the establishment of observatories, outline a promising path toward deeper ocean protection and understanding in the Caribbean region. This is only the beginning of a collective journey to preserve the oceans for future generations.

 

By Alex Palomino Cadena.

CURRENT NEWS ITEMS

ANCA
14 February 2024

During the visit of Dr. Yuri Okolodkov from the University of Veracruzana, Mexico, various activities were organized with the aim of disseminating information,…

ANCA
14 February 2024

En el marco de la visita del Dr. Yuri Okolodkov de la Universidad Veracruzana, México, se desarrollaron diversas actividades con el objetivo de divulgar, capacitar y…

2024 ocean decade
9 February 2024

This Conference will mark a pivotal moment to celebrate achievements and set joint priorities for the future of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable…