Next week, scientists, policymakers, entrepreneurs, and artists will gather at Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands – both in-person and virtually – to kick-off the annual Ultramarine Ocean Summit. The event boasts an impressive line-up, including Mission Blue founder Sylvia Earle, ocean explorer Fabien Cousteau, conservationist and world-renowned wildlife photographer Cristina Mittermeier, and actress and environmental activist Jane Fonda.
The virtual portion of the event, put on by nonprofits Sustainable Ocean Alliance (SOA) and Oceanic Global, is available for the public to enjoy, free of charge. Each of the three-days of virtual programming will include a theme: plastic pollution, protecting marine life, and the regenerative ocean economy.
Day 1 – February 3, 2021: Tackling Plastic Pollution
The virtual portion of the Ultramarine Ocean Summit will kick off with lightening talks from leaders in the fight against the ocean’s plastic problem:
Day one of the virtual Summit will also include a discussion of Oceanic Global’s initiative to reduce plastic pollution at the source through the non-profit’s “The Ocean Standard” (TOS). The session will focus on three key destinations where the campaign has been implemented: Tulum, Mexico, Barbados, and Italy’s Aeolian Islands.
The first day will conclude with a panel of experts for a discussion on the scope of the ocean plastic problem, the multifaceted issues this pollution poses to the planet, and potential solutions to this massive problem. Panelists include:
Day 2 – February 4, 2021: Protect Marine Life, 30×30 Campaign
The second day of the virtual portion of the Ultramarine Ocean summit will focus on international policy. The day will open with a discussion of ongoing projects to protect the ocean with a focus on the international 30×30 campaign, which seeks to protect 30% of the ocean by 2030. The panel will include:
Before the next panel, Day 2 of the Ultramarine Ocean Summit will feature a keynote speech from Dr. Sylvia Earle on the importance of protecting marine life.
The second panel of the day will focus on other ocean policy iniatives and will be moderated by Jeffrey LeBlanc, an advisor to the Government of Ecuador and founder of Mare Nostrum. Panelists include:
Day two will close with a session on immersive experiences from Fabien Cousteau.
Day 3 – February 5, 2021: Regenerative Ocean Economy
The last day of the virtual portion of the Ultramarine Ocean Summit will focus on the Seabed Mining Campaign, ocean investments, and underwater filmmakers making an impact.
Before opening up a panel discussion on the Campaign, a video curated by Schmidt Ocean will lay the groundwork for the need to protect the seafloor from mining. Subsequent videos will focus on youth leaders involved in the fight against seabed mining. Jane Fonda will provide a keynote speech on the importance of the Seabed Mining Campaign, too, followed by a panel discussion featuring:
Next up will be a panel on investing in the oceans to achieve a better future. The session will be moderated by Ted Janulis of Investible Ocean and including panelists:
The third session will include a discussion moderated by Cristina Mittermeier, featuring panelists:
The third and final day of virtual programming will conclude with a spotlight on entrepreneurs awarded microgrants through SOA’s ocean solutions program:
You can sign up to attend the virtual component of the Ultramarine Ocean Summit through the event’s website.