Welcome to the October Blue Economy Bulletin. This is the last newsletter before the EAS Congress 2018, which takes place from 27-30 November in Iloilo City, Philippines. Next month, instead of an E-update, daily bulletins will be sent out from the EAS Congress. To those attending, we look forward to seeing you there. In conjunction with the EAS Congress, PEMSEA is releasing its 25th anniversary publication. This publication serves as a compendium of PEMSEA's integrated coastal management (ICM) activities throughout the past 25 years. Two previews of partnership hubs at the EAS Congress are included in this bulletin: one on business opportunities in the blue economy, and one on blue carbon solutions.
Both the blue economy and blue carbon are gaining increasing global attention. The Meloy Fund is seeking investment opportunities in the coastal fisheries sectors of Indonesia and the Philippines, while a study by Plymouth Marine Laboratory (PML) has found MPAs benefit a variety of economic sectors in addition to their ecological and socioeconomic benefits. Both the Meloy Fund and PML will be attending the EAS Congress 2018. The World Bank has announced a blue economy trust fund, and a framework for ocean finance was presented at the Our Ocean summit. Blue carbon is becoming increasingly important, especially given the troubling IPCC report on 1.5°C warming, although action is being taken as the GCF approved 19 new projects in developing countries and the IMO rejected attempts to soften upcoming sulfur content limits for marine fuel.
As overwhelming plastic waste flows resulted in Malaysia following China in announcing a future ban on plastic waste imports, international focus on the issue is being visited in forums such as the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment and the Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy. The value fish and other vertebrates play in sequestering carbon in the ocean is being seen in the concept of "fish carbon". Despite this, overfishing continues to shrink fish populations, for example in Myanmar and the Philippines.
PEMSEA's thoughts go out to the thousands affected by the earthquake and tsunami in the city of Palu and nearby areas of Indonesia. Such events highlight the vulnerability of many living in coastal communities throughout the region and the world.
Follow the latest updates on blue economy and coastal sustainable development in East Asia on Facebook and Twitter (@PEMSEA). We welcome your feedback, and please let us know if there are other blue economy topics you would like to see in future newsletters and programs.