The Government of France provided a voluntary contribution of the amount of 500,000 Euros to the United Nations Environment Programme in order to implement the Action Plan of the ICRI Secretariat and UN Environment Assembly Resolution 2/12 on Sustainable Coral Reefs Management. The second session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) adopted a resolution 2/12 on Sustainable Coral Reefs Management. The resolution, inter alia, requests UN Environment to pursue specific actions in collaboration with the International Coral Reef Initiative (ICRI), including an analysis of global and regional governance mechanisms and policy instruments relevant to coral reefs (paragraph 13), as well as further development of coral reef indicators, regional coral reef assessments as well as the preparation of a global report on coral reef status and trends (paragraph 14). In addition, this contribution will allow the implementation of pilot projects at the site level to test innovative and replicable approaches to protect coral reefs.
The Action Plan of the ICRI Secretariat was adopted by the ICRI members during the 31st General Meeting (Paris, 2016) and comprises 5 themes:
- Theme 1 – “Help raise awareness of how coral reefs and related ecosystems help to fight climate change”
- Theme 2: “Meet international requirements regarding coral reefs”
- Theme 3: “Help to reduce human threats to coral reefs and associated mangroves and seagrasses, by making greater use of regulatory tools”
- Theme 4: “Monitor the state of reefs in order to better manage them”
- Theme 5: “Progress via education”.
The plan of action includes a goal specifically on the implementation of UNEA resolution 2/12. Furthermore, number of other goals and actions directly address priorities in resolution 2/12, including in relation to outreach and awareness raising; financing for initiatives to protect and restore coral reefs and related ecosystems; meeting the Sustainable Development Goals and in particular Goal 14 on Oceans; as well as priorities in UNEA resolution 2/11 on marine plastic litter and microplastics.
The UN Environment’s Coral Reef Unit has a long history of working with ICRI and its Global Coral Reef Monitoring Network, and the contribution will allow to continue this fruitful collaboration on coral reefs during France’s co-chairmanship of ICRI.