Unprecedented economic investment for the protection of the seas. The ‘One Planet Summit for the Oceans’ summit that has been held in Brest (France) and that has addressed the way to preserve the world’s seas with concrete measures, has achieved the commitment of several public financial entities to inject 4,000 million euros within three years to clean the oceans.
The Clean Oceans initiative, in which Spain participates through the Official Credit Institute (ICO), has doubled its financing commitment to reach 4,000 million euros in 2025 in order to protect the oceans.
In addition, it has been confirmed during this convention the iIncorporation of a new member, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)).
At the ‘One Ocean’ summit, the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), acting on behalf of the German Federal Government, have pledged to double the objective of the ‘Clean Oceans’ initiative, together with the Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), the Italian national development institution, and the Spanish Official Credit Institute (ICO).
Given “the threats facing the oceans and the urgency of protecting this natural resource”, according to a statement, the ‘Clean Oceans’ initiative has decided to increase its objective to provide 4,000 million euros of financing between now and the end of 2025, doubling the 2,000 million euros initially planned for 2023.
Already delivered 1,600 million euros
These funds will go to projects that seek to reduce plastic pollution in the sea. For these three years, the initiative has already reached 80 percent of its objective, by providing €1.6 billion in long-term funding for public and private sector projects that reduce landfills of plastics, microplastics and other waste in the oceans through better management of solid waste, sewage and stormwater.
The projects signed to date within the framework of the initiative will affect more than 20 million people who live in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe, reports Europa Press.
Examples include improved wastewater treatment in Sri Lanka, China, Egypt, and South Africa, solid waste management in Togo and Senegal, and stormwater management and flood protection in Benin, Morocco, and Ecuador.
In the words of the director general of the Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Rémy Rioux, the increase in funding “demonstrates that public development banks work closely with coastal and river stakeholders to reduce pollution by plastics in the oceans, which is largely derived from land-based activities. “I am also delighted that the EBRD has joined this initiative, thus strengthening Team Europe in its fight to preserve the oceans,” he added.
For his part, the general director of the Italian Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), Dario Scannapieco, stressed that the commitments to the 2030 Agenda “must not waver at a time when we are rebuilding our economies.” “CDP stands ready to play an active role in promoting constructive partnerships, looks forward to joining forces with its partners in the Clean Oceans initiative, and is pleased to welcome the EBRD as an important partner,” he said.
“Our operations to green municipal infrastructure, shipping, as well as real estate and tourism, will make a real difference in reducing ocean waste, especially plastic,” said EBRD President Odile Renaud Basso.
Participation of Spain
The president of the ICO, José Carlos García de Quevedo, stated that «preserving the health of our oceans is a priority to consolidate the model of growth and sustainable development».
“Keeping this objective in mind, and as a development bank, ICO reaffirms its commitment to the Clean Oceans initiative. We are proud to join our efforts, together with other public development banks, to the founders of this initiative (the AFD, the KfW and the EIB) to reach the objective that we have set for 2025”, he pointed out.
Finally, the general director of KfW, Stefan Wintels, assured that “the oceans are under strong pressure: pollution, dirt and overfishing, and their biodiversity is seriously threatened.” «This step, a joint European response to a key global challenge, reinforces our common efforts against plastic waste,” he added.