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COP-26: BLUE Carbon

Climate action needs ocean action

The ocean is the world’s largest carbon sink. It sustains life on earth by absorbing excess heat and carbon dioxide and by producing 50 per cent of the earth’s oxygen.  

 Yet the potential for ocean-based solutions to deliver up to a fifth of the emissions cuts needed by 2050 to limit global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees C has largely been left off the COP26 agenda. 

 Negotiators will be reminded of the ocean’s crucial role in climate change by a moving blue carbon seascape created for Blue Marine Foundation (BLUE) and supported by Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, that is showcased in the main cafeteria of the Blue Zone for the duration of COP. 

 Damaging activities such as bottom-trawling and dredging not only indiscriminately obliterate marine wildlife, they also damage ‘blue carbon’ habitats like seagrass and disturb and release carbon stored on the seabed.  

The video shown on a huge screen is a version of a pioneering digital platform, www.theseawebreathe.com, narrated by Stephen Fry, developed by BLUE in partnership with Bristol-based creative agency Green Chameleon.  

The video submerges the viewer in an underwater worldconnecting users to the natural climate solutions of the ocean. It showcases precious blue carbon habitatssuch as mangroves, and explores how effective marine protection should be an aim for all of humanity.  Charles Clover, Executive Director of BLUE said: ‘We are thrilled to present this educational video which clearly explains the perils of overfishing – one of the greatest threats to the ocean in our time – and its relevance to the climate convention which currently leaves it out almost entirely.’ 

About The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation
The Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation is a Portuguese institution, established in perpetuity, with the statutory goal of undertaking charitable, artistic, educational and scientific activities. Headquartered in Lisbon, the Foundation also has branches in France and the UK.
The Gulbenkian Prize for Humanity, awarded annually, in the amount of 1 million euros, aims to recognise people, groups of people and/or organisations from all over the world whose contributions to mitigation and adaptation to climate change stand out for innovation and impact.
It is a flagship initiative of the Gulbenkian Sustainable Development Programme, which supports work across climate action and ocean protection in Portugal, the UK and internationally. Effective public engagement and the need for joined up approaches which benefit people and the climate, business and biodiversity are underpinning themes. Promoting the role of a healthy ocean in tackling climate change has been a particular focus of the Foundation’s work in the UK.
Across all its work, the Foundation aims to help build a more cohesive society that offers equal opportunities and actively promotes the well-being and quality of life of vulnerable groups, while ensuring environmental protection and economic sustainability.

About Green Chameleon
Green Chameleon is a groundbreaking creative production studio based in Bristol, specialising in 3D, motion, brand and the latest digital and production technologies. Green Chameleon’s company culture encourages adventurous creativity, backed by collaborative processes and a practical, professional approach. They are recognised internationally for their experimental creative work and extraordinary brand experiences, attracting progressive clients from around the world.

Key stats

83% of the global carbon cycle is circulated through the ocean

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