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United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Sustainable Development

Goal of the Month for June: SDG 14


Sustainable Development Goal 14 is about conserving and sustainably using the world’s ocean, seas and marine resources. 

Why the goal matters?

The ocean covers more than 70 percent of the earth’s surface. As the planet’s largest ecosystem, the ocean regulates the climate, generates oxygen and provides livelihoods for billions. More than 3 billion people depend on marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. The ocean also contributes to current and future sustainable economic growth.

A healthy, productive, sustainable and resilient ocean is fundamental to life on our planet and to our future. 

Yet, our ocean is facing a global emergency. Climate change poses adverse effects on the ocean and marine life, including the rise in ocean temperatures, ocean acidification, deoxygenation, sea level rise, the decrease in polar ice coverage, decrease in marine biodiversity, as well as coastal erosion and extreme weather events and related impacts on island and coastal communities. Cumulative human activities also cause ecosystem degradation and species extinctions. 2022 is the year to stop the decline. 

In June, the Goal of the Month editorial looks at Goal 14 (Life under Water). We explore the impacts of the decline of the ocean, the ocean-climate nexus, and what science-based solutions are available.

Read more about this topic here.