The largest ecosystem on earth, the ocean is the lung of the planet, providing the oxygen for every second breath we take. It provides the main food source for almost half of the world’s population and plays host to an estimated 80% of the planet’s biodiversity. Major industries such as shipping, fishing, aquaculture, and coastal tourism depend upon ocean health.
With an annual economic value estimated at USD$2.5 trillion, equivalent to the world’s 7th largest economy, the blue economy is increasingly attracting investors, insurers, banks, and policymakers as a new source of opportunity, resources, and prosperity. However, its rapid unsustainable growth can lead to environmental risks and losses in natural capital, eroding the ocean’s resource base and creating regulatory, market and physical risks.
Sustainable Blue Economy Finance Initiative
To help guide the crucial role that banks, insurers and investors can play, the Sustainable Blue Economy Finance Principles were unveiled in 2018. The principles provide a guiding framework for financing a sustainable ocean economy, and were developed by the European Commission, WWF, the World Resources Institute and the European Investment Bank.
Building on the momentum of these principles, UNEP FI hosts the Sustainable Blue Economy Finance Initiative; a new platform bringing together financial institutions to work with scientists, corporates and civil society.
Learn more here