The Commonwealth Blue Charter

“ Shared ocean, shared values ”

The Commonwealth Blue Charter is an agreement by all 53 Commonwealth countries to actively co-operate to solve ocean-related problems and meet commitments for sustainable ocean development.

The Charter of the Commonwealth – signed by Queen Elizabeth II in 2013 – provides the underlying principles for the Blue Charter, ensuring that the Commonwealth takes a fair, equitable, inclusive and sustainable approach to ocean economic development and protection.

Commonwealth Blue Charter Action Groups are member-driven, led by ‘Champion’ countries. At the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in April 2018, 11 countries stepped forward to be Champions on eight topics they identified as priorities. Action Groups will unlock the power of 53 nations and guide the development of tools and training, they are: Aquaculture, Blue Economy, Coral Reef Restoration, Mangrove Restoration, Ocean Acidification, Ocean and Climate Change, Ocean Observations and Marine Plastic Pollution.

The Blue Charter empowers individual and collaborating member nations to provide the leadership within the Commonwealth to solve the challenges of greatest concern to them

Pen Hadow Arctic Ocean Explorer

Cooperation amongst Commonwealth countries, with initiatives like the Blue Charter, will ensure greater ocean governance on issues like marine pollution.

Grace Kaue Office of Ocean Affairs, Papua New Guinea

Collaboration between Commonwealth countries on ocean commitments can help ensure that best practices are shared and innovations will be implemented.

Taaniella Kula Tonga Ministry of Lands, Survey & Natural Resources

At DOSI, we believe there is no one nation to provide expertise in global issues affecting the ocean. In this way, we are happy to engage with the Blue Charter in bringing experts to wider ocean issues.

Maria Baker Deep Ocean Stewardship Initiative (DOSI)

Ocean-related commitments will take a long time to be implemented.
By working together, we can achieve better and quicker results.

David Natogga Ministry of Mines, Energy & Rural Electrification

The Commonwealth's cooperation can help move forward ocean-related issues as ideas can be shared and assistance provided between the 53 developed and developing countries.

Kerry-Ann Spaulding Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Jamaica

46 of 53

Commonwealth countries have marine coastlines

36.5%

of national marine waters are in the Commonwealth

70%

of the Earth’s surface is ocean

32

Commonwealth countries have coral reefs, accounting for 42% of the global whole

45%

of Commonwealth countries are small island developing states – those most vulnerable to ocean change and climate change

0.11°C

sea surface temperature rise per decade between 1971 and 2010

2600 miles

Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is the largest reef system in the world

26%

increase in ocean surface water acidity compared to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution

50%

of fish for human consumption is provided by aquaculture

60-90%

of marine pollution is made up of different types of plastic

Provided for illustrative purposes only. Information drawn from Flanders Marine Institute (2018) Maritime Boundaries Geodatabase: Maritime Boundaries and Exclusive Economic Zones (200NM), version 10. Available online at http://www.marineregions.org/ and https://doi.org/10.14284/312

Download The Commonwealth Blue Charter

The Commonwealth Blue Charter – Shared Values, Shared Ocean. A Commonwealth commitment to work together to protect and manage our ocean.

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