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United Nations - Office of Legal Affairs
Activities of the Legal Counsel of the United Nations

United Nations Legal Counsel, Mr. Serpa Soares, participated in several events on World Oceans Day

11 June 2018

In keeping with well-established tradition, on 8 June the Secretary-General released a statement in which he highlighted the problem of plastic pollution. The statement urged governments, communities and individuals to celebrate the oceans by helping clear them of pollution and ensure they remain vibrant for generations to come.

As Focal Point for UN Oceans, Mr. Serpa Soares participated in several events on World Oceans Day. He opened the discussion panel event “Clean our Ocean: Youth and Innovation”, which brought forward examples of visions, innovative approaches and partnerships which support a clean ocean for sustainable development, with a focus on the importance of youth participation.

The event was moderated by Ms. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson, Founder and President, Ocean Collectiv and counted on the active participation of Ms. Jayathma Wickramanayake, Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth; Ms. Swetha Stotra Bhashyam, United Nations Major Group for Children and Youth; Amb. Juliette Babb-Riley, Co-Chair of the Regular Process for Global Reporting and Assessment of the State of the Marine Environment, including Socio-economic Aspects; Mr. Sam Tiecher, Founder and Chief Reef Officer, Coral Vita; Ms. Lea d’Auriol, Founder, Oceanic Global; Mr. Cyrill Gutsch, Founder, Parley for the Oceans; Ms. Angelique Pouponneau, Co-Founder, SIDS Youth AIMS Hub and Mr. Peter Malinowski, Executive Director of the Billion Oyster Project, as well as Mr. Cody Simpson, UNDP Ocean Advocate and the Special Envoy for the Ocean, Mr. Peter Thomson.

In his remarks, the Legal Counsel highlighted the importance of the oceans as a resource that must be cared for by current and future generations. Mr. Serpa Soares recognized the significance of young people taking leadership roles in cleaning and protecting our planet’s most precious resource. The Legal Counsel invited the youth to continue undertaking their inspiring actions with creativity and enthusiasm for solving the problems that our oceans face today.

Later in the day, Mr. Serpa Soares opened the annual World Oceans Day Reception at the United Nations, offering welcoming remarks. The reception provided an opportunity to celebrate the shared goal of joining forces to stop the degradation of the health of our oceans and to ensure its health. As it is traditional, on the night of the 8 June, the Empire State Building was again lit in blue in honor of World Oceans Day.

Legal Counsel at the World Oceans Day 2018
The Legal Counsel, Mr Serpa Soares, participated in several events on World Oceans Day
courtesy of Benjamin Lozovsky, Parley for the Oceans