Our Challenge

The ocean is a life source. It adds $2.5 trillion each year to the global economy, feeds 3 billion people, holds more than half the world’s species and is our planet’s life support system.

Yet the health and economic vitality of the ocean are under threat. Activities such as overfishing, habitat degradation, pollution and rising temperatures are causing rapid biodiversity loss. Fishing and tourism, as well as the well-being of coastal communities, are in jeopardy.


The ocean could sustainably produce 6x more food than it does today


Ocean-based solutions could deliver 35% of necessary emissions reductions by 2050


A sustainable ocean economy can deliver 40x more renewable energy by 2050


A sustainable ocean economy can create 12 million new jobs by 2030

Our Approach

WRI works to build a sustainable ocean economy by putting sustainability at the heart of ocean management. We aim to accelerate ocean action while raising the profile of the ocean on the international stage.

We convene the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy (Ocean Panel) along with Friends of Ocean Action, working directly with heads of state and an international network of experts and partners in business, intergovernmental organizations, NGOs and finance. We produce ground-breaking research exploring pressing challenges and solutions at the nexus of the ocean and the economy. And through the Ocean Watch open data platform we support the flow of science to policymakers working to develop sustainable ocean economies.

Ocean Panel member countries committed to 100% sustainable ocean management in their national waters. Achieving this ambitious goal will require transformations in five critical areas.

WRI works to catalyze ambitious ocean action around the world by building on cutting-edge research and thought leadershipExplore all projects in depth.

  • Bottom of the ocean floor.

    High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy

    Also known as the “Ocean Panel,” this unique initiative of 18 serving world leaders aims to build momentum toward a sustainable ocean economy.

    Part of Ocean
  • Aerial view of ocean and islands.

    Ocean Action 2030

    Ocean Action 2030 supports countries in building a sustainable ocean economy through the development and implementation of Sustainable Ocean Plans.

    Part of Ocean
  • Ocean from satellite

    Ocean Watch

    The Ocean Watch open data platform delivers science to policy makers developing sustainable ocean economies and operationalizing integrated ocean management.

    Part of Ocean

Media Contacts

  • John Lyons

    Senior Communications Manager, Ocean Program