UNESCO Co-organizes Conference on Oceans and Climate Change

3 September 2010:  The International Ocean Institute (IOI), the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the State Oceanic Administration of the People's Republic of China co-organized the Pacem in Maribus XXXIII International Conference on Oceans, which took place from 2-4 September 2010, in Beijing, China, under the theme "Oceans, Climate Change and Sustainable Development: Challenges to Oceans and Coastal Cities."

The Conference celebrated the 50th anniversary of the IOC. During the conference, Patricia O'Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs, delivered a message on behalf of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, underlining the importance of the marine environment to human well-being, adding that its role in regulating the global climate is "perhaps the most significant." She drew attention to the vulnerability of coastal communities to climate change, in particular people living in small island developing States (SIDS). She underscored the importance of halting the decline of coastal ecosystems in order to mitigate the effects of climate change. [UN Secretary-General's Statement] [Conference Announcement]