As compounding impacts from our worsening climate and biodiversity crisis become more visible around the globe, leading scientists, including CST Research Fellow Tanya Brodie Rudolph, have released a perspective paper presenting the need for a new international panel for ocean sustainability (IPOS) in Nature Partner Journal Ocean Sustainability.

The initiative for this panel arose from two streams of work: a CNRS conference entitled “The Ocean as a Commons” and a paper on a transition towards ocean sustainability for the High Level Panel for the Ocean.

The ocean plays a fundamental role in a sustainable biosphere, from supporting human well-being and the global economy to sustaining keystone biodiversity and ecosystems. Despite this, there has been a lack of integrated transdisciplinary ocean science to assess impacts arising from ocean change on biodiversity, land, climate systems, and society.

“The importance of a panel like the IPOS cannot be overstated. It is a crucial step towards achieving a sustainable future for our ocean and planet.”

          CST Research Fellow, Tanya Brodie Rudolph

The UN Decade for Ocean Science for Sustainable Development and the past ocean “super year” in 2022 collectively provide a unique window of opportunity to mobilise scientists, politicians, policymakers, civil society, and communities to form new relationships with the ocean. The idea of an International Panel for Ocean Sustainability (IPOS) evolved in this context, responding to the need to elevate collaboration and production of knowledge across disciplines to guide policy in an environment characterised by increasing human use.

The best possible foundation of knowledge is required to support sustainable ocean governance and use. The IPOS presents an opportunity to build this base by coalescing scientific capacity and integrating knowledge systems on principles of equity in a multidisciplinary framework.

Our oceans face many challenges, from overfishing and pollution to climate change and acidification. A panel of international experts working for a transition towards ocean sustainability is essential to address these interwoven issues.

The formation of the proposed International Panel on Ocean Sustainability (IPOS) will play a key role in amplifying ocean sustainability as a critical action during the UN Decade of Ocean Science. The CST is proud to have Research Fellow Tanya Brodie Rudolph as the co-lead author of this paper. This highlights the CST’s commitment to ocean sustainability and the importance of transdisciplinary research in addressing the complex challenges facing our oceans.

Read: An evolution towards scientific consensus for a sustainable ocean future