Photo: Tracey Jennings / Ocean Image Bank

A High-Level Summit to Accelerate Impact

The Blue Climate Summit will be held in French Polynesia on May 14-20, 2022. This global convening of 250+ carefully selected ocean leaders and champions in the heart of the Pacific promises to be a uniquely galvanizing, powerful, and impactful event.

The purpose of the Summit is to accelerate ocean-related solutions to climate change, launch major announcements, galvanize task forces, present impact investment opportunities, and provide an international forum for Pacific Islanders to spearhead action on ocean and climate issues.

The Summit will bring together scientists, environmental activists, business leaders, policy makers, financial experts, community leaders, influencers, and youth leaders to accelerate solutions to some of the greatest challenges facing humankind.

The Blue Climate Summit is an endorsed action of the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development and is co-hosted with the Government of French Polynesia alongside other public and private institutions.

 With the largest managed marine area in the world and its 19,000 km2 Biosphere Reserve, our people of the largest ocean continent carry a message to offer to the World. On the occasion of the Blue Climate Summit, I invite the world to come to French Polynesia, to Listen to us, and above all, to Hear us.  

- Monsieur Edouard Fritch, President of French Polynesia.

 Read our full press release

Why a Blue Climate Summit?

The ocean is life-giving to humanity and the biosphere. It provides us with food, oxygen, incomes, and energy. It is a vast carbon and heat store, protecting us from climate change. Yet it is under threat. Human actions are causing rising sea levels, warmer temperatures, ocean acidification, biodiversity loss, and ecosystem damage through chemical pollutants. The health of our oceans is bound to the health of people and our planet. We urgently need action to reverse the downward spiral.

Solutions do exist, but need backing with the expertise, resources, networks, and influence to go to scale. The Summit has identified compelling real-world projects that target six blue climate missions: climate change mitigation, ocean protection, CO2 removal, healthy blue communities, sustainable tourism, and improved ocean understanding. Together, we will focus on action-based conversation to ensure these projects have a transformative impact.

Ocean stewardship is intrinsic to Polynesian culture, and climate change is an existential threat across the South Pacific. The Summit, co-sponsored by the Government of French Polynesia, also offers a global forum for Pacific Islanders to inspire and inform action on ocean and climate issues.

Meet the Co-Conveners of the Blue Climate Summit

We are honored to count among our Co-Conveners some of the world’s most distinguished thought leaders. Champions all, they are truly game changers working at the nexus of oceans and climate change.

H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco

Sovereign of the Principality of Monaco and Founder of Fondation Prince Albert II de Monaco

Edouard Fritch

President of French Polynesia

Sylvia Earle

President and Co-Chair, Mission Blue / The Sylvia Earle Alliance

Nainoa THompson

President, Polynesian Voyaging Society

Richard Bailey

Chairman and CEO, Pacific Beachcomber S.C.

Andrew Forrest

Co-founder of Minderoo Foundation

Laura Turner Seydel

Chair, Captain Planet Foundation

Marc Benioff

Founder, Chairman and CEO, Salesforce and Owner, Time Magazine

Principles & Spirit of the event

Locally situated, globally relevant - celebrating local expertise alongside a global change agenda

Impact-focused - catalyzing and scaling tangible action with measurable outcomes

Dynamic and interactive - tapping the expertise, ideas and capacities of all participants

Creative, generative and emergent - exploring new ideas and collaborations

Inclusive and cross-sectoral - leveraging diversity for holistic solutions

Credit: Gaby Barathieu / Ocean Image Bank

Missions & Projects

The overarching objective of the Blue Climate Summit is to accelerate ocean-related solutions to climate change. The six missions below will provide the Summit’s structure and Projects will be the focus of action, collaboration, and commitments. The Projects below will be catalyzed by Summit programming designed to harness the collective intelligence of the full participant group and promote collaboration.

Ocean Carbon Dioxide Removal: Sequester carbon through ocean-related strategies

Advancing Ocean-Based Carbon Removal Roadmaps & Community Building

Blue Carbon Lab

Blue Carbon Exchange (BCX)

Blue Climate Change Mitigation: Avoid carbon emissions through ocean-related innovations

Navigating Toward Sustainability

Marine Permaculture for Food Security, Ecosystem Regeneration & NetZero

Tahiti Wave Energy Challenge

Ocean Protection: Scale up conservation efforts that benefit both nature and people

A FADfree Belt

Forests of the Sea

Ocean Ventures Studio

Shining a light on Deep Sea Mining

MPA Watch: Conservation of 30% of the Ocean by 2030

Healthy Blue Communities: Support an engaged network of communities to advance human wellbeing, ocean health, and climate resilience

Ocean Guardians

Watershed Interventions for Systems Health

Reinventing Marine Resources Community Management

Blue Foods: Nourishing & Supporting Blue Communities

Digital Earth Pacific

Sustainable Blue Tourism: Support tourism programs in island and coastal destinations contributing to climate change mitigation, poverty alleviation, and the protection of natural & cultural heritage

Net Zero Tahiti

Seaflower Biosphere Blue Tourism Project

NOW Monetising the true value of Ocean Protection

Ocean Understanding: Advance inclusive understanding of the ocean

Reef OS

Summit Program Highlights

Day 1: Welcome reception for all aboard the Paul Gauguin.

Day 2: The Vast Ocean-Climate Challenge: A welcome at the Presidential Palace will lay down the call for action, after which participants will immerse themselves in the six blue-climate missions.

Day 2 and 3: Project Acceleration: Diverse projects will undergo multiple rounds of iteration and support, benefiting from peer expertise and links to potential funders. Projects are as varied as blue carbon exchange, wave power, seaweed farming, reef restoration, and a deep sea mining watch.

Day 4 and 5: Scaling for Impact: Together, the projects must seed a wider transformation. Participants will be challenged to address dependencies, identify synergies, and tackle underlying constraints such as finance, data, law, and coordination. The Summit will join a historic convening of Polynesian voyagers.

Day 6: A Message to the World: The Summit concludes with a public ocean aid concert on the Tahiti waterfront, bringing together international and local artists to raise public awareness and inspire action for ocean and climate.

The Ocean Concert

An ocean benefit concert will be held on the Tahiti waterfront on the last day of the Summit, May 20, 2022. The event will bring together international and local artists to raise awareness and inspire action on ocean and climate issues. Between performances, local and world leaders will speak out on the ocean and climate crisis. There has never been a more important time for the world to come together around the threats facing our oceans and our planet.

the ocean concert may 20, 2022

A Climate-Positive Event

The Blue Climate Initiative is committed to making the Summit a climate-positive, net-zero emissions event. Direct emissions reduction, carbon removal, and indirect emission avoidance are all vital forms of net-zero strategies (see the Oxford principles for net zero aligned carbon offsetting and Decoding ADEME’s opinion on carbon neutrality). We have incorporated all types of offsets into our program. We also believe that travel-related carbon offsets should support climate action in the destination community itself, wherever possible. While working closely with Summit service providers to minimize their footprint through sourcing from most sustainable available channels and means of transport, we offset the Summit’s carbon footprint by investing in both a carbon removal/sequestration project in the tropical IndoPacific and an emission reduction project in French Polynesia.

We estimate the footprint of the Summit, including participant travel, at roughly 900 tons of CO2. While participants are encouraged to offset their own travel (e.g., through airline carbon credit programs), and the Summit program itself will of course stimulate and accelerate substantial new climate action, we are also investing over $200,000 directly in projects that offset at least 1,800 tons of CO2 (i.e., at least twice the Summit’s carbon footprint).

The initiatives that we are putting into action include our carbon removal/sequestration project, a multiple-year investment in the development and restoration of two hectares of mangrove forest in Malaysian Borneo, which will also offer significant co-benefits for biodiversity and local livelihoods. Our emissions reduction program advances the decarbonization of Moorea (the Summit’s host island in French Polynesia) through the installation of rooftop solar panels at a local community center and research station. Through this investment, we also support educational, scientific, and cultural programs linked to island sustainability and climate resilience.

Find out more about the Summit Climate Reduction Program

Meet our Program Committee Co-Chairs!

At the helm of a fourteen-member committee, our distinguished Program Committee Co-Chairs will curate the projects that will support the Missions underpinning the Summit by focusing action, collaboration and commitments.

Researcher at the National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and Lead Researcher at Centre de Recherches Insulaires et Observatoire de l’Environnement (CRIOBE)

Executive Director of the University of California Gump South Pacific Research Station (Moorea); Research Affiliate at the Berkeley Institute for Data Science

Founder and Lead Partner of FutureTable; formerly Head of Global Food Systems Collaboration at the World Economic Forum; Strategic Lead, Blue Climate Initiative

Secretary General, Ocean & Climate Platform; Global Shapers member; UNFCC Co-focal point for Ocean and Coastal Zones for the Marrakech Partnership-Global Climate Action Agenda

Strategic Advisor
Blue Climate Initiative

Meet our Program Committee Members!

Ignace Beguin Billecocq
Ignace Beguin Billecocq

Ocean Lead, UNFCCC Climate Champions

gigi brisson
Gigi Brisson

Founder and CEO, Ocean Elders and Co-Founder, Attractor Investment Management

Kate Brown
Kate Brown

Executive Director, Global Island Partnership (GLISPA)

Alison Clausen
Alison Clausen

Programme Specialist at UNESCO - Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission

Emanuele-di-lorenzo
Emanuele Di Lorenzo

Director & Professor of Ocean Science & Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology; Chairman, Ocean Visions

Craig Dudenhoeffer
Craig Dudenhoeffer

Chief Innovation Officer, Sustainable Ocean Alliance; Co-Founder of the Ocean Solutions Accelerator

Sylvie Goyet
Sylvie Goyet

Advisor to the CEO & Vice President, Fondation Prince Albert II de Monaco

Dan Hikuroa
Dan Hikuroa

Senior Lecturer Te Wānanga o Waipapa, University of Auckland; Culture Commissioner, New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO

Fabien Laurier
Fabien Laurier

Director, Technology and Innovation, Minderoo Foundation

Rebekah Shirley Lukera
Rebekah Shirley Lukera

Director of Research, Data & Innovation at World Resources Institute, Africa.

Megan Morikawa
Megan Morikawa

Global Director of Sustainability, Iberostar Group

Hinano Tevai Murphy
Hinano Teavai Murphy

Cultural Director, Tetiaroa Society and Te Pu Atiti’a

Gerard Siu
Gerard Siu

President, Maritime Cluster of French Polynesia

Torsten Thiele
Torsten Thiele

Founder, Global Ocean Trust

COVID-19 Protocols

Everyone on the Paul Gauguin (participants and crew) will be required to provide proof of vaccination prior to boarding. Also, in addition to government-mandated testing before and after arrival in French Polynesia, everyone will be tested prior to boarding and during the Summit.

 

 

 

Why a Summit in French Polynesia?

Pacific Islands have contributed minimally to climate change, but may be among the most vulnerable to its effects. Mobilizing the world to protect the ocean while sustainably tapping its potential requires locally-led blue climate action. French Polynesia, in the heart of the Pacific, provides a powerful forum for a global convening on the ocean/climate nexus

 

 

French Polynesia is carving an innovative path, avoiding the pitfalls leading to the irreversible degradation of its two pillars: "moana" (the ocean) and "fenua" (the land). Framework of our Common Heritage, these pillars bring together all spaces, resources and natural environments, sites and landscapes, air, water and soils, animal and plant species, ecosystems and their services, diversity, and the biological balance which they both thrive from and contribute to. With the largest managed marine area in the world and its 19,000 km2 Biosphere Reserve, our people of the largest ocean continent carry a message to offer to the World. On the occasion of the Blue Climate Summit, I invite the world to come to French Polynesia, to Listen to us, and above all, to Hear us.

- Monsieur Edouard Fritch, President of French Polynesia.

Summit sponsors, partners and co-hosts

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