For the past four days I’ve been attending meetings and encountering different people. Truth be told, I’ve learnt things I never knew, especially about the blue economy. Hello friends, Stana here, welcome to my second blog which is presenting an overview of what I’ve absorbed this week, about the Blue Economy.
The Blue Economy
The Blue Economy is an evolving concept of maximizing the economic potential presented by the ocean while preserving it. It is a way of securing and protecting materials which would in turn benefit us in the future. The blue economy is important to SIDS like Seychelles, as we are an oceanic island. It is a primary source of nutrition, exportation and importation and it can be linked to every single job! The blue economy is unique to Seychelles, because it is one of the developing pillars of the Seychelles’ economy, providing an average of 41% income, 90% of which comes from the tuna factory. To fully realize transition to a blue economy, there are seven thematic areas identified by the Commonwealth, which are vital to creating the conditions for growth and investment:
Challenges the Blue Economy faces
The blue economy faces a large amount of challenges, some of which are caused by our actions and some by natural phenomenon, e.g. global warming, which causes coral bleaching and pollution, which is one of the main troubles caused by humans. For instance, plastics are disposed of into the environment, which are then driven in the sea and interfere with the ecosystem. Animals mistake it for food, some animals get caught in it and eventually die. Marine Invasive Species (e.g. Crown of Thorns) are also a threat to the marine ecosystem, eating away the corals and destroying the reefs, causing a decline in the species of fish due to the loss of habitat. This has a great effect on us, because if there’s no fish in the sea, there’s no food for us, less income for the sector causing an economic downfall.
To be honest, this is only one quarter of the problems the blue economy face; if I continue I would eventually run out of space but I’ll leave it for my future blog.
What are some of the solutions to reduce these problems and face these challenges?
During one of my meeting this week with Sustainability for Seychelles, Mrs. Caroline Callow said “the sea is the lungs of the planet” and there’s no doubt that it should be protected. In order to do so, we need to start doing sustainable practices like stop littering. Sustainable tourism should be considered and practiced more throughout the country in all the businesses and hotels. As less than 1% of the Seychelles EEZ is protected, more environmental management (marine parks/protected areas) are necessary. In order to be able to reduce these problems there should be more collective work and less competition between the people so there can be more effective change.
If there is one thing I learnt this week it is that Everything is Linked. Watch out for my next blog where I will explain this to you my friends. I hope I have given you an idea of what the blue economy is and how you can help to take care of it. Until next time!