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With 400 marine areas listed as “biologically dead” to date, coral reefs reduced 20 per cent in the last 50 years, plus acidification and numerous other problems, current human activity is putting an incredible strain on our oceans.

The Blueprint for Ocean and Coastal Sustainability, a new report released by United Nations Agencies last week, however, has proposed a series of comprehensive measures, 10 altogether, to put the brakes on the processes responsible.

Proposals include the creation of a global blue carbon market in which direct economic gain is derived from habitat protection and the promotion of research into ways of mitigating ocean acidification.

But the task, the report aptly notes, is not an easy one.

The unrelenting drive of market forces, insufficient political will and resources and the sheer scope of the contributing problems, it says, highlight the need for unified international action.

“Success,” according to the report, “will depend on sound policy processes and effective institutional arrangements and will therefore require commitment and funding from the international community as well as nations and industry.”