The Protecting Our Planet Challenge announced today at the UN Ocean Conference a $1 billion commitment to help protect 30 percent of the ocean by 2030. This single commitment is roughly equal to all philanthropic giving for marine protected areas and habitat protection over the past decade.

The following statement was released by Simon Cripps, Wildlife Conservation Society Executive Director of Marine Conservation, about this announcement:

The Protecting Our Planet Challenge’s $1 billion commitment for ocean conservation is an important step toward the world achieving 30x30, protecting at least 30 percent of the world’s land and ocean by 2030. This remarkable commitment is a major step toward sustainably managed seas which is so critical to nature, people and climate.

“We hope the support from the Protecting Our Planet Challenge partners inspires governmental action that, combined with this philanthropy, can be transformational, in global efforts to protect the world’s oceans.

“Protecting the areas of the ocean that contain the most important biodiversity, needed for environmental health, livelihoods, food and resilience to climate change is one of the most important things we can do to move the world onto a sustainable footing. These protected areas must be established with the support of Indigenous Peoples and local communities so that they provide real benefits, not just until 2030, but long into the future.

“Today’s commitment from the Protecting Our Planet Challenge shows that funders are working together in a coordinated way to support the ever-increasing environmental ambitions of countries across the world. At WCS, our marine program operates in 26 countries across the globe, and we stand ready to operationalize the conservation work required to save the world’s oceans.”