Friday, October 29, 2021

Oceans & Blue Carbon at COP26

[Origin article: The Blue Forests Project / 29 Oct 2021 / Oceans & Blue Carbon at COP26]

This live blog features oceans, blue forests, and coastal and oceanic blue carbon related side events at UNFCCC COP26 (31 Oct - 12 Nov). 31 events are listed. This post will be updated throughout the COP.

For any suggested updates or edits please email: steven.lutz (@)

(Last update 3 Nov, Version 7)

Useful links

Side Events & Exhibits / UN Climate Change Conference November 2021 (COP 26)


Virtual Ocean Pavilion


IISD's Earth Negotiations Bulletin coverage of the Glasgow Climate Change Conference (UNFCCC COP 26)


Sunday, October 31

Launch of the 3rd Because the Ocean Declaration

19:30 GMT – Playfair Library Hall of the University of Edinburgh - Invitation-only

The 3rd Because the Ocean Declaration will be launched at a high-level event on the first day of COP26.

A plurilateral initiative in support of a multilateral ocean outcome at COP26, the Declaration was prepared in the last seven months by a group of Parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change.

If you wish to attend, please apply by email at:

The event will be by invitation-only. Invitations will be issued individually, taking into account social distancing required at the time by local authorities and the University of Edinburgh.

Wednesday, November 3

Climate Change Mitigation & Adaptation Through Coastal Ecosystems Conservation & Restoration

14:30-15:30 GMT – EU Pavilion

Coral reefs, mangrove forests, and seagrass meadows are marine and coastal ecosystems provide a multitude of benefits to society and ecology, including climate adaptation and mitigation. The session will present approaches to restore and conserve these ecosystems, as well as showcase field practices, discuss adaptive capacity, knowledge sharing, and the scaling up of restoration activities. Speakers include UN Oceans Ambassador Peter Thomson, Head of Marine Programme for IUCN Minna Epps, and others.

Hosts: ICRS, Blue Mangrove Fund – Friendship and GEOMAR.

Event link (scroll down):

Policy Dialogue to Strengthen Blue Carbon’s Contribution to Carbon Neutrality

13:00 - 15:00 GMT – Korean Pavilion

Host(s): Government of the Republic of Korea, KOEM, Government of Indonesia

This event is co-organized by the Government of the Republic of Korea and the Government of Indonesia and will be held in the Korean Pavilion.

Event link:

COP26 Korean Pavilion:

Thursday, November 4

Hope comes out of the blue: Inspiring climate action from source to sea

10:00 - 11:00 GMT – Water Pavilion

An expert-led panel discussion and inspiring film, spotlighting how source to sea management, coastal habitats and the open ocean offer humanity's last best hopes to avert the climate crisis.

The threat of the climate crisis is overwhelming, but there is hope. From whales and plankton to coastal wetlands, life-giving rivers and natural ecosystems, nature is our greatest ally in our time of need. But to fully realise nature’s gifts in carbon capture and adapting to climate change, we need supportive policy and financing frameworks and coordinated action from source to sea.

The climate crisis has proven to be too complex to be effectively confronted by the traditional approaches of isolated responses. Our best hope is to use an holistic approach to protect and restore land, freshwater, coastal and ocean ecosystems that capture greenhouse gases and increase resilience.

This event aims to highlight the benefits that source-to-sea management holds for climate mitigation and adaptation and will showcase how 'blue carbon', from coastal habitats to the deep sea, gives us hope in mitigating the threat of climate breakdown. It will leave you with clear steps to take to realise the full potential of nature based solutions to the climate crisis from source to sea.


  • Opening Remarks by Ruth Mathews, Senior Manager SIWI and Coordinator of the Action Platform for Source-to-Sea Management
  • Welcome Message by Peter Thomson, UNSG Special Envoy for the Ocean
  • Moderated Panel Discussion
  • Moderator Ruth Mathews
  • Panellists:
  • Henk Ovink, Special Envoy for International Water, Kingdom of the Netherlands
  • Rachel Dunk, Principal Lecturer, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • Ralph Chami, Assistant Director of the International Monetary Fund
  • Closing remarks

Convenors - Action Platform for Source-to-Sea Management (S2S Platform), SIWI, UNDP, Kingdom of the Netherlands, Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust, Marine Conservation Society, Whale and Dolphin Conservation.

Video of event:

Investing in Wetlands: A new trend in smart climate financing?

10:00 - 12:00 GMT – Republic of Korea Pavilion

Description: Hybrid event

This event is co-organized by the Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands.

Event link:

COP26 Korean Pavilion:

Blue Carbon in NDCs - Case Studies in Ambition

11:00 - 12:00 GMT – NDC Partnership COP26 Pavilion, Bldg D, Hall 4


  • Tom Hickey, Pew Charitable Trusts
  • Tom Dillion, Senior VP, Pew Charitable Trusts

Ministerial panel, introduced by Tom Hickey:

  • Minister Andre Perez, Belize
  • Minister Cynthia Barzuna, Costa Rica
  • Minister Naadir Hassan, Seychelles
  • Pablo Viera, Director – NDCP Partnership

Video of event:

Let’s start the ocean data revolution in the Nordics! - Building partnerships for integrated nature-based solutions to climate change

14:00 - 15:00 GMT – SEC Centre, Hall 4, Exhibition Way, Glasgow, G3 8YW

Organizer: Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS) / Co-organizers: Accenture (Sweden)

Blue Carbon is instrumental to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement. Directing the required projects and investments in the Blue Economy requires data, expertise and cross-sectoral partnerships. Solutions in the Nordic region have the potential to catalyze transferable, actionable partnerships for the benefit of the world’s blue ecosystems.

Moderator: Richard Sanders, Director, ICOS Ocean Thematic Center (Norway)


  • Lovisa Bergman, Accenture (Sweden)
  • Kikki Flesche Kleiven, Director, Bjerknes Center (Norway)
  • Dorothee Bakker, University of East Anglia (UK)

Organizer: Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS)


  • Accenture (Sweden)
  • Bjerknes Center (Norway)

Follow this event live on their COP26 streaming hub:

Event link:

Ensuring biodiversity benefits from Nature-based Solutions (NbS)

15:00 - 16:15 GMT – Glen Affric (Multimedia Studio 3)

NbS can provide significant climate change mitigation and adaptation, but biodiversity benefits must be ensured. This event will convene marine, terrestrial and urban experts from multiple sectors to explore how NbS can deliver an integrated approach to tackle the climate and biodiversity crises.

Speakers: Speakers will include scientists and practitioners from ZSL; Plateforme Océan et Climat; Comité 21; Wildlife Conservation Society; Wildlife and Countryside Link; France Ville Durable; The Pacific Community; WWF; Conservation International; French, UK and/or Costa Rica government officials.

Finding Green Solutions in Blue Forests - Can kelp combat climate change?

15:15 - 15:45 GMT – SEC Centre, Hall 4, Exhibition Way, Glasgow, G3 8YW

Nordic blue forests are important natural sinks for carbon and can contribute to reaching ambitious climate goals in the Nordic region. The event will discuss findings from the Nordic Blue Carbon project and address the importance of maintaining and strengthening blue forests as carbon sinks.


  • Solrun Figenschau Skjellum, Norsk Institutt for Vannforskning (NIVA), Nordic Blue Carbon project
  • Marianne Olsen, leader of the Nordic Council of Ministers Ocean and Climate group, Norwegian Environment Agency

Organizer: NMR HavKli, Nordic Council of Ministers - Ocean and Climate group

Follow this event live on their COP26 streaming hub:

Event link:

Ocean solutions: Coordination and collaboration for ocean-based mitigation and adaptation

16:45 - 18:00 GMT – Derwentwater

This event will showcase how action-driven trans-disciplinary science and cross-sectoral collaboration can help stakeholders adapt to the climate-induced challenges placed on the ocean and thus improve sustainable development, limiting warming to 1.5 °C, enhancing NDCs, and helping achieve Net Zero.

Speakers: J. Laverick, Youth4Ocean Forum; J. Post, UNFCCC; F. Manoni, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat; M. Martinez, Foreign Affairs, Chile; T. Pitta e Cunha, Oceano Azul Foundation; P. Campostrini, CORILA, Italy; S. Soleille, BNP Paribas; M. Leinen, Scripps Institution of Oceanography; H. Findlay, GOA-ON.

Event brochure (Why the ocean matters in climate negotiations):

Event link:

Blue Carbon Protection in NDCs: Enhancing Ambition through Nature-Based Solutions

18:30 - 19:45 GMT – Glen Affric (Multimedia Studio 3)

Moderated Ministerial panel of countries who have included coastal wetlands (mangroves, seagrasses and saltmarshes) protection in their updated NDCs. Discussion on NDC development/implementation and how these efforts can speak to other potential nature-based solutions.

Co-hosted by Pew Charitable Trusts and the Government of Seychelles.

Speakers: Ministerial representatives from Seychelles, Belize, Costa Rica, Chile and UK (and others – tbc), plus international experts and partners involved in NDC development. Moderated by Pew.

Event link:

Friday, November 5

Using Nature-Based Solutions for Adapting to Climate Change and Building Economic Resilience Based on Blue Economy Principle

06:20 - 07:50 GMT – Virtual (the location is being confirmed)

Organisers: Indonesian Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries (MMAF), Wetlands International, EDJPRL, Yapeka, Rare, Konservasi Alam Nusantara

Speakers include: Dr. Hendra Yusran Siry, Secretary Directorate General of Marine Spatial Management, MMAF, Sakti Wahyu Trenggono, Minister of Marine Affairs and Fisheries Republic of Indonesia, MMAF, Dr. Pamudji Lestari, MSc, Acting Director General of Marine Spatial Management, MMAF, The Ambassador of Maldives to Indonesia (tbc), Jane  Madgwick (CEO, Wetlands International), Imran Amin/Muhammad Ilman (YKAN), RARE & YAPEKA.

Event link:

Ocean & Adaptation, Resilience, and Mitigation

09:00 - 11:00 GMT – Virtual Ocean Pavilion - Virtual event

Live Event: Ocean & Adaptation, Resilience, and Mitigation: Creating and implementing the enabling conditions for action through science, capacity building, and other cross-cutting approaches.

Event link:

Roundtable discussion: The Ocean and Climate Justice: Impact, Adaptation and Mitigation

12:00 - 14:00 GMT – The Lighthouse, Gallery 1, 11 Mitchell Lane, Glasgow G1 3NU - In-person and virtual event

This event is organised by the One Ocean Hub for as part of the Scottish Government COP26 event series.

Ocean covers 70 per cent of the earth’s surface, absorbs 25% of global carbon dioxide and produces 50% the oxygen we breathe. However, the nexus between the ocean and climate change has been overlooked. This roundtable discussion will highlight an important message that inclusive ocean governance is essential to ensure that resilience and adaptation to climate change is sustainable and just. The roundtable will explore the impacts of climate change upon an array of internationally guaranteed human rights such as the human right to health and in some coastal communities, the right to self-determination and life. Given the close relationship between climate change and the enjoyment of human rights, this roundtable will illuminate the importance of integrating human rights in society’s response to climate change. This roundtable discussion will further draw attention to the challenges posed by climate change upon indigenous peoples and small-scale fishing communities, distribution of fish stocks, and the structure of deep-sea ecosystems. It will provide an opportunity to discuss innovation and adaptation strategies that can support the sustainability of the oceans and improve communities’ resilience.

Event link:

Wetland/Peatland conservation, restoration, and management - Explore the importance of resilient wetlands for climate and biodiversity

16:00 - 16:50 GMT – SEC Centre, Hall 4, Exhibition Way, Glasgow, G3 8YW

Effective conservation, restoration and management of wetlands, including peatlands, holds enormous potential to contribute to climate adaptation and mitigation, and conservation of biodiversity. Here, policy makers and experts from Scotland and Arctic states will explore the challenges and opportunities that are emerging as we collectively seek to protect and restore these crucial ecosystems.


  • Marie McAllan, Scottish Government – Minister for Environment and Land Reform
  • Gustaf Hugelius, CAFF/University of Stockholm
  • Terhi Lehtonen, State Secretary at the Ministry for the Environment, Finland
  • Andrew Coupar, NatureScot – Policy and Advice Manager, Uplands and Peatlands

Organizer: Scottish Government

Others involved: NatureScot, CAFF (Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna), The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency

Follow this event live on their COP26 streaming hub:

Event link:

Ocean and Coastal Zones Event

(the event time is being confirmed) – Hybrid (the location is being confirmed)

Organisers: Marrakech Partnership

Speakers include: Jane Madgwick (CEO, Wetlands International)

Event flyer:

Saturday, November 6

Nature-based solutions to climate change: helping people, the environment, and the planet

8:05 - 9:00 GMT – Australian Pavilion? (the location is being confirmed)

Facilitator: Australia’s Ambassador for the Environment, Mr Jamie Isbister

Nature-based Solutions, such as the protection and restoration of blue carbon and forest ecosystems, result in outcomes for climate mitigation and adaptation, the environment and people. Australia is working to enhance opportunities for cross-sector participation and private sector funding in Nature-based Solutions by working with our Pacific neighbours, coordinating global partnerships, protecting and rehabilitating natural habitats, diversifying livelihoods, funding research and brokering private sector interests. At this event, Australia will be inviting further engagements through the new Climate Resilient by Nature Program and Blue Carbon Accelerator Fund.

Event link:

Designing Blue Carbon Policy for Sustainable Outcomes

9:00 - 10:00 GMT – Australian Pavilion

Hosts(s): Australia, with participation from Indonesia and the Pacific

Speeches and Panel Discussion.

Event link:

Coastal Blue Carbon Panel: The vital role of mangroves for climate change mitigation and adaptation

9:00 - 10:00 GMT – Commonwealth Pavilion

Host(s): Blue Ventures and Conservation International, with the support of CATIE, Bangor University and the Blue Carbon Initiative.

Event link:

Coastal Blue Carbon Panel – The vital role of mangroves for climate change mitigation and adaptation

09:30 - 10:30 – Science Show Theatre (Green Zone)

In parallel to our Blue Carbon Panel in the Commonwealth Pavillion in the Blue Zone at COP26, Blue Ventures is organising a second in-person panel to discuss mangroves and blue carbon. The panel looks at the role of mangroves in the context of global climate breakdown, from the perspective of coastal communities living on the frontline, and the government and civil society groups working to support them.

The panel discussion will be supplemented by an interactive audience Q&A session.

Participant list:

  • Moderator: Sophie Benbow · Head of Marine – Fauna & Flora International
  • Ambassador Peter Thomson – United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for the Ocean
  • Cicelin Rakotomahazo – Mangroves Coordinator – Blue Ventures
  • Ulfath Ibrahim – Senior Foreign Relations Officer – The President’s Office, Maldives
  • Dr James Robinson – Director of Conservation – WWT
  • Sru Bunthary – Technical Officer (Cambodia) – WWT
  • Helen Cutillar – City Information and Tourism Officer – City Government of Sagay, Philippines

Event link:

Mobilizing ocean and climate action at all levels for increased climate ambition

11:30 - 12:45 GMT – Lomond Auditorium

Healthy oceans and coastal areas are a critical part of the climate solution. COP26 presents an opportunity to mobilize ocean-climate ambition at all levels. We will discuss national and community-led solutions, focusing on pathways for increased ocean climate action at COP and on the ground.

Speakers: High-level representatives from the Friends of Ocean and Climate group, including from the governments of Chile, Costa Rica, Fiji, Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom, and United States, and local leaders from coastal communities.

Event link:

The IPBC: Working together to deliver outcomes for climate, the environment and people

13:00 - 14:00 GMT – Australia Pavilion

Hosts: The International Partnership for Blue Carbon

The International Partnership for Blue Carbon (IPBC) is hosting a side event titled ‘Working together to deliver outcomes for climate, the environment and people’.

The event will take place on Saturday, 6 November 2021, from 1:00pm to 2.00 pm local time in the Australia Pavilion at the conference venue in Glasgow, UK. There will also be the opportunity to connect virtually.

The event provides a platform for presenters to communicate their blue carbon initiatives, share ideas and discuss opportunities for partnering with others, including a panel discussion on the topic: Perspectives on partnership – blue carbon activities and reflections on how partnerships are helping your work.

Event link:

Building Stronger REDD+ Cooperation under the Article 6 of the Paris Agreement

13:15 - 14:30 GMT – Glen Affric (Multimedia Studio 3)

Sharing knowledge on REDD+ under the Paris Agreement to encourage government cooperation and private sector engagement. It will discuss the demand for REDD+ and how these programs can be funded, and strategies to overcome challenges in forest ecosystems and wetlands.

Speakers: Dr. Young Sook YOO (Former S. Korea Environment Minister; CHOI Jai-chul (Former S. Korea CC Ambassador); KIM Raehyun (Nat. Institute of Forest Science); Hajar Khamlichi (OPMHT and Moroccan Alliance for Climate and Sustainable Development); Khalid Charki (Morocco Water and Forests Commission).

Event link:

Seaweed as a Nature-Based Climate Solution

14:15-15:30 – SDG Pavilion

This session will discuss how seaweed, or marine macroalgae, can be a significant nature-based climate solution with large scaling potential that can directly sequester carbon and indirectly displace greenhouse gas emissions in numerous ways. Discussions will centre on the UN Global Compact recent vision statement on “Seaweed as a Nature-based Solution for Climate Change.”

Event link (scroll down):

Carbon conservation and sequestration in ocean: nature-based solutions and other marine processes

15:00 - 16:15 GMT – Derwentwater

Carbon conservation and sequestration in ocean: nature based solutions and other marine processes

Many coastal blue carbon ecosystems have been recently lost or badly degraded. There is a need to improve protection and consider restoration wherever practicable, through the design of novel and smart, cross-sectorial and multi-regulatory responses.

Speakers: HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Denis Allemand/Nathalie Hilmi - Centre Scientifique de Monaco, Paul Holthus - World Ocean Council, Perre Masque - IAEA, Lisa Levin - Scripps, Ralph Chami - IMF, Patricia Morales - Fondation Meri, Jason Hall Spencer / Ana Queiros - Plymouth Univ, Sandra Cassotta

Event flyer:

Event link:

Monday, November 8

Blue Carbon Conservation and Restoration in Action: Examples from the Commonwealth

11:00 - 12:00 GMT – Commonwealth Pavilion

Host(s): Blue Carbon Initiative, Conservation International, IOC-UNESCO, IUCN, International Partnership for Blue Carbon.

Event link:

Partners for Wetlands: Decade for Wetland Restoration at the Peatlands Pavilion

11:00 - 12:00 GMT – Peatlands Pavilion - Hybrid event

Organisers: RAMSAR Convention; BirdLife International; International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN); International Water Management Institute (IWMI); Wetlands International (WI); Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT); World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)

Speakers include: Hans Schutten, Program Head Climate Smart Land-use, Wetlands International; WWF; IUCN; RAMSAR; FAO; UNEP.

Event link:

 Link for registration:

COP26 Special: Bottom trawling and a zero-carbon future: what needs to change?

16:00 - 18:30 GMT Live and virtual (the live location is being confirmed)

Small-scale fishers and environmental groups have long criticised bottom trawling for its negative impact on coastal fisheries and ecosystems. But emerging research suggests that bottom trawling’s impacts extend beyond seabed damage and overfishing and includes significant contributions to global greenhouse gas emissions. If current estimates are correct, then bottom trawling may be one of the most carbon-intensive methods of producing food. In this special COP26 panel discussion, a global panel of experts will explore bottom trawling’s place in a zero-carbon future.

The session aims to:

  • Present current research on the contribution of bottom trawling to the climate crisis and its broader social and ecological impacts
  • Explore the impacts of bottom trawling restrictions in West Africa and Belize and present opportunities for bottom trawling management in Europe
  • Facilitate cross-sectoral learning by discussing approaches to bottom trawling management in diverse global geographies
  • Discuss policies that exist or could be developed to mitigate the impact of bottom trawling on coastal fisheries, ecosystems and the climate

Event link (registration required):

Building forward better: A blueprint and tools to meet global goals for climate, nature and people

16:45 - 18:00 GMT – Loch Lomond

Showcase opportunities and approaches for a green and just recovery and climate action, from nature-based solutions and safeguards to addressing financial risks from nature loss, highlighting the need for collaboration across financial flows, donor/recipient countries, sectors and policy processes.

Speakers: Emily Shuckburgh/Nina Seega, University of Cambridge; Patricia Zurita-CEO, BirdLife International; Amy Fraenkel-Executive Secretary, CMS; Koen Doens-Director General, DG INTPA, EC; Muhammad Mahmood Abubakar-Minister of Environment, Nigeria; Piyush Gupta-CEO, Development Bank Singapore OR GEF CEO.

Event link:

Tuesday, November 9

COP26 Event: Save the Ocean to Save the Climate – Blue Carbon Breakfast Briefing

08:00 - 09:00 GMT – Ottoman Coffee house, 73 Berkeley St

COP26 is a vital point in the response to the global climate emergency. One of the biggest carbon stores is our seas, yet it is not included in nations’ climate change plans, and emissions or sequestration from it are not yet counted in the UK, the EU, or any nation’s annual emissions statistics. This briefing aims to provide an introduction to the role our seas play in addressing the climate crisis and what more should be done to manage activities taking place in them.

Join our Blue Carbon Breakfast Briefing with:

  • Dr Rashid Sumaila, Professor and Director of the Fisheries Economics Research Unit at the University of British Columbia Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries
  • Dr Emma Cavan, Research Fellow, Imperial College London
  • Claudia Beamish, former Member of Scottish Parliament and Special Advisor to the Scottish Labour Group on COP26
  • Mike Walker, Our Fish

Moderated by Phil Rhodri Taylor, Open Seas

Event link:

Register at:

Thursday, November 11

Blue Carbon: Beyond the Inventory - International Conference, Workshop & Fieldtrip

11 & 12 Nov – National Museum of Scotland

The Scottish Blue Carbon Forum, in collaboration with Marine Scotland and the University of St Andrews, are pleased to announce a two-day Blue Carbon Conference to coincide with COP26 (United Nations international climate negotiations), being hosted by the UK in Glasgow from 31 October to 12 November, 2021. The Conference will gather, both in-person and on-line, an international audience (including COP26 delegates) to participate in a series of plenary sessions and workshops, addressing scientific and policy-facing issues, to address Blue Carbon developments in the context of the Global Climate Emergency.

The meeting will include policy and science talks, workshops and discussions to highlight current best practice as well as emerging opportunities going beyond the current frameworks, challenges and threats to Blue Carbon. Talks and posters demonstrating emerging science will feature strongly, reinforcing the message of the importance of evidence-led policy.

An evening reception on the 11 November at the National Museum of Scotland is being supported by our partner, The Glenmorangie Company.

Event link:

Pre-Registration, Registration & General Enquiries: To pre-register your interest in attending this conference and to receive priority alerts, updates and general advice, please e-mail:

Registration is now open and supported by our partner MASTS; both in-person and on-line attendance is possible. Register here.

UN-Oceans: Ocean Action = Climate Action

16:45 - 18:00 GMT – South Downs (Multimedia Studio 1)

Ocean-based mitigation and adaptation solutions are essential to the achievement of the Paris Agreement. This side event will showcase efforts that nations are taking, with the support of the UN, to enhance these solutions for ecosystems and societies.

Speakers: Lead organization: UN-Oceans Supporting organizations: FAO, IAEA, IMO, IOC-UNESCO, UN/DOALOS, UNEP-CMS, UNESCO, UNCTAD, UNFCCC, WMO.

COP26 Presidency Programme


Green Zone Programme of Events


COP26 on YouTube


International Partnership for Blue Carbon (IPBC) partner events (also check for updates here)


Oceans Day - Glasgow 04.11.2021 (Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council)

Link (multiple events listed):

Biodiversity and Adaptation - Glasgow 05.11.2021 (Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council)

Link (multiple events listed):

Ocean Decade Events at COP26 Glasgow


UNESCO's IOC at the Climate COP26 (Glasgow)


Wetlands International at COP26


World Ocean Council list of ocean-related COP26 events, including a co-organized Blue Zone event

Peatland Pavilion at UNFCCC COP26


Ocean-Based Climate Solutions in Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) (July 2021 Update)