Launch of ‘First Descent: Midnight Zone’ mission to Seychelles and Maldives

On 4 March 2020, the Commonwealth and the Nekton Foundation will launch ‘First Descent: Midnight Zone’, a mission to explore and protect the Indian Ocean – the world’s least explored and most at risk ocean.

First Descent

First Descent is a ground-breaking scientific research mission, using the world’s most advanced deep diving submersible.

The goal of the mission is to better understand the 630,000 km2 of ocean across Seychelles and the Maldives, so that governments can make better management decisions.

The data collected will help Commonwealth leaders make the best policies to protect the ocean, including on marine conservation, climate change and fishing.

Nekton also supports training, grants and fellowships for local students and early-career scientists.

Commonwealth Blue Charter

The mission is aligned to the Commonwealth’s flagship programme for ocean governance, known as the Blue Charter.

The launch event includes a press briefing and a reception at Marlborough House. For more information, contact [email protected]

(Photo credit: Nekton)

Commonwealth Blue Charter – All Champions Meeting

Countries driving the Commonwealth Blue Charter project will meet in Cyprus from 21 to 24 March 2020. They will reflect on what they’ve achieved over the past year, and agree on a strategy for the coming year.

The Commonwealth Blue Charter is a landmark agreement by leaders to cooperate on ocean action. Since launching in 2018, 10 action groups led by 13 ‘champion’ countries have rallied Commonwealth members around pressing ocean issues like marine pollution, coral reef restoration and climate change.

Champion countries will share experiences, best practices and new ideas.

For more information, please contact Heidi Prislan, Commonwealth Blue Charter Adviser: [email protected] or [email protected]