World Oceans Summit in Singapore Kicks Off Today

By Meigan Henry

Singapore is playing host this week to The Economist’s World Oceans Summit.  Presented in association with National Geographic, the event will bring together over 200 global leaders, including scientists, businesses, and representatives from governments, NGOs, and other key stakeholders.  They’re all at the Summit to talk about sustainability, economics and the world’s oceans.

NG Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala. Photograph by Zafer Kizilkaya

Attendees will look at the state of the oceans today, and will tackle some big questions:

  • Can ocean economics and ocean conservation run hand in hand?
  • How can we responsibly govern ocean resources for the benefit of both humans and wildlife?
  • Looking towards the future, can the oceans continue to feed a growing global population?

Summit participants won’t just talk about troubling issues such as overfishing, ocean pollution and loss of biodiversity, they’ll also be working towards potential solutions.  Everyone will break up into groups Friday afternoon to tackle focused issues and present reports back to the group at large.

From presidents and ambassadors, to CEOs and bankers, from authors and scientists, to policy advisors and NGO directors, the Summit has gathered together people who can and will make a difference in the future of the world’s oceans.

NG Explorer-in-Residence Sylvia Earle. Photo by Mark Thiessen/NGS

Kicking off the three-day event is the Welcome Reception where National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Sylvia Earle will take the stage as keynote speaker.  Oceanographer and explorer, Sylvia has spent her life championing the ocean– “the blue heart of the planet”–and all of its inhabitants.

National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala will also be on hand as a panelist in a discussion on the economics of marine protected areas  (MPAs).   And renowned photographer and National Geographic photojournalist David Doubilet will be front and center at the Summit’s gala dinner, presenting photographs and stories from his underwater career.

Follow along with updates from the World Ocean Summit on Twitter @NatGeoExplorers and @Economist_WOS.

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