The sea, the environment’s and the global economy’s new frontier

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12 June, 2021




Paris, 12 June 2021: On the occasion of the 4th edition of the ChangeNow Summit in Paris from 27 to 29 May, the French Association Entreprises pour l’Environnement (EpE) released the first report of its Ocean Commission set up in late 2018. This publication draws on concrete examples to show how businesses are reducing their impact on the oceans, and offers replicable, marine science-based best practices.

While the importance of the ocean to our society has never been so tangible and its economic role so strong, its conservation is threatened: the ocean is deteriorating rapidly under the impact of climate change, of multiple kinds and sources of pollution, of overexploitation of its resources and services, and of biodiversity loss.

Against a background of growing awareness, EpE member companies decided to set up an Ocean Commission in 2018 to collectively explore those issues and share their knowledge and experiences.

This publication describes how businesses are addressing these environmental, economic and scientific issues, and provides illustrations of their many best practices:

  • The first chapter deals with the rapid expansion of ocean-related economic activities and the risks that this «Blue Acceleration» poses for the economic and ecosystem services provided.
  • The second chapter discusses the vital role of scientific and technological knowledge in protecting the oceans.
  • In the third chapter, we discuss the development by business of known and innovative solutions to reduce the impacts of existing activities on marine environments.
  • The final chapter examines the arrangements enabling business to facilitate the coexistence of uses in the marine environment.

This publication collates EpE member companies’ thinking – supplemented with additional insights from businesses, scientists, public authorities, NGOs and financial players – and pursues three goals:

  1. Raising awareness in the economic community and its stakeholders of threats to the stability of the oceans, and of solutions to reduce them.
  2. Contributing to dialogue between maritime and non-maritime businesses and their stakeholders on the solutions and proposals advanced by them.
  3. Demonstrating the existence of technological and organizational solutions whose widespread adoption can help restore a healthy and productive ocean.

Entreprises pour l’Environnement (EpE) brings together forty or so large companies who share the vision of the environment as a source of progress and opportunity, and work together to take better account of it in their management strategies and policies. EpE is the French Global Network partner of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).

Download the report in English and in French here

More information
David Laurent
Head of Climate & Ocean
Entreprises pour l’Environnement (EpE)