Establishing a partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme
On Monday on behalf of the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic, Nofima’s director Øyvind Fylling-Jensen signed an agreement with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). The parties will, among other things, cooperate on issues related to marine pollution, especially the vast amount of plastic that ends up in the seas.
“It is crucial that we protect the long-term health of the Arctic and international waters, and UNEP is looking forward to working with the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic. We must lift the global ambition to build a sustainable blue economy, and reduce the negative effects of plastics and other contaminants in the ocean,” said Erik Solheim, head of UNEP.
Signed by Nofima
The agreement was signed by Øyvind Fylling-Jensen, the Administrative Director of Nofima’s Food Research Institute, which the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic is associated with administratively.
The partnership was signed on Monday the 29th of October during the International Ocean Conference, Our Ocean, which was held in Bali. The Fisheries Minister Harald T. Nesvik opened the signing ceremony on behalf of the Norwegian Government.
“I am pleased that the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic will collaborate with UNEP. Oceanic industry is of critical importance to Norway, and we have a leading role internationally. The centre has an important role in facilitating a sustainable blue economy,” said Nesvik.
The agreement, a “Memorandum of Understanding” (MoU), is a strategic framework designed to reach common goals and exchange information. Through the partnership, the Centre and UNEP will develop knowledge-based future studies on the oceaniceconomy, rooted in international sustainability goals.
“It’s inspiring to cooperate with UNEP to place the ocean on the international agenda,” said Jan-Gunnar Winther the Director of the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic.
“Together, we will communicate how it is possible to balance their protection and use, especially in the northern regions. Our mission is to give the United Nations global sustainability objectives, substantial content to communities along the Norwegian coast,” Winther elaborated.
About the Centre for the Ocean and the Arctic
- The Centre for Ocean and the Arctic was opened in 2018 and was designated by the government to compile, analyse and disseminate knowledge on the blue economy in the north.
- The Centre will facilitate closer cooperation among different areas of expertise and serves as a contact point for the Norwegian research community towards Solberg’s High-Level Panel for a Sustainable Oceanic Economy.
- The Centre is an organisation under the Ministry of Trade Industry and Fisheries, and it is connected administratively to Nofima. The other partners in the Centre other than Nofima are UiT Norway’s Arctic University, Innovasjon Norway, the Norwegian Polar Institute, Akvaplan Niva and the Institute of Marine Research.
- UNEP was established in 1972 and is the UN’s leading agency on the environment.
- The organisation monitors the environment and develops guidelines for international cooperation on environmental and conservation issues. It also serves as an advisory and coordinating body in the field.
- The United Nations Environment Programme has played an important role in the preparation of several international environmental conventions, including the Convention on Climate, the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Convention on Mercury.