A Decade of Marine World Heritage

 Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Islands

Universal heritage hidden under the water, and what can be accomplished when nations unite to protect it. 

Surrounded by the urban landscape of concrete and glass, you may not think of the ocean all that much. You may not want to add another stressful factor to your busy life, concerning about acidification, overfishing or rising sea levels. But ocean's resources sustain humankind, from the oxygen we breathe to the food we eat and the economy that employs us. Simply put: «For us to have a life where we survive and thrive financially and spiritually, we need healthy natural systems». This is how Ocean Elder Sven Lindblad described our shared reality at the UNESCO conference held last August, and it could not be more true. 

 Belize Reefs

Belize Reefs

UNESCO stands on the first line of defense, protecting valuable sites registered on the World Heritage List. The World Heritage Marine Programme celebrates a decade since it was established with the goal to ensure the protection of marine places of outstanding universal value. The ocean is a connected entity and we can’t really have a conservation success in one place and failure on another. The World Heritage Marine Programme is only a decade long, but the achievements are loud: 49 treasures are now under the collective care, facilitating cooperation across boundaries. 

If not for the program, the underwater treasures of Great Barrier Reef, Galapagos Islands and lesser known Belize reefs or Puerto-Princesa Subterranean River National Park in the Philippines would not have the iconic status. In the times of unprecedented change every significant environmental feat is a cause for celebration, but is certainly not the time to cross off the environmental concerns off our list. Everything is all but interconnected and we need our healthy ecosystems. 

 Puerto-Princesa Subterranean River

Puerto-Princesa Subterranean River

隐藏在水下的共同遗产以及当国家联合起来保护它的意义。

被混凝土和玻璃构成的城市景观围绕时,你大概就不怎么会关心海洋。你可能不想给你繁忙的生活添加另一个让人紧张的因素,比如酸化、过度捕捞和海平面上升之类的问题。但是海洋资源维持人类的可持续发展,从我们呼吸的氧气到我们吃的食物和雇佣我们的经济体。有一篇言简意赅的讲话概括了这些内容:«我们的生活,我们经济上和精神上的生存和繁荣都要求我们有一个健康的自然系统»。这就是Sven Lindblad在去年8月举行的联合国教科文组织会议上所描述的我们共同的现实,而他所说的一切都真真切切。

 Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef

联合国教科文组织站在保护世界遗产名录上注册的珍贵遗址的第一道防线上。世界遗产海洋项目即将庆祝它成立十周年,它始终秉持着它成立的目标,即为了全世界的共同价值保护海洋。海洋是一个连接的实体,我们不能在一个地方建立成功的保护而又在另一个地方失败。世界遗产海洋项目诞生只有十周年,但成就是响亮的:四十九个海洋宝地正在跨越了国界的合作之下被各国齐心协力保护着。

如果没有这项计划,大堡礁的水下宝藏,加拉帕戈斯群岛和鲜为人知的伯利兹礁、公主港地下河、菲律宾的国家公园也都不会有标志性的地位。在前所未有的巨变时代,每一个重大的环保壮举是值得庆祝的,但这并不代表我们已经摆脱了名单上的一系列环境问题。事物是存在着相互联系的,而我们需要一个健康的生态系统。

The Maker