Oceans, with their temperature, currents and undersea life, are the engine of global systems that make Earth habitable for humans. They cover three-quarters of the earth's surface. Our drinking water, weather, climate, coastlines, much of our food and even the air we breathe depend on the sea.
Oceans and seas absorb 30 percent of total CO2, and phytoplankton provide 50 percent of our oxygen. Over the centuries, oceans and seas have remained crucial for trade and transportation. The current value of economic activity at sea is estimated at $3 to $6 trillion. Even today, oceans and seas carry 90 percent of all transportation, and via undersea cables, 95 percent of global telecommunications. Fisheries and aquaculture provide over 15 percent of their animal protein consumption for 4.3 billion people.
No sustainable future is possible without careful management of this vital global resource.