[Coral-List] Scientist sign-on Blue Carbon Code of Conduct

Steven Lutz stevenlutzmail at yahoo.com
Mon May 29 06:41:50 EDT 2017

Dear colleagues,

Could you please please sign-on as individual scientists to the following Blue Carbon Code of Conduct for next month’s UN Ocean Conference?

This is not US advocacy, this is a request for tropical marine and social scientists to join our non-binding Voluntary Commitment, essentially a pledge to support the development of fair, socially just and accountable blue carbon projects. Our code comes from Bennett et. al. 2017. 

To sign-on just reply to me at steven.lutz at grida.no or stevenlutzmail at yahoo..com and we will add you to the Commitment. Our deadline for sign-on is Friday, 2 June 2017.

Drs. Carlos Duarte, Peter Macreadie, Andrew Baker, and James Kairo are leading our list of signed-on scientists. 

Groups signed-on include: Blue Carbon Lab, Deakin University, Australia; Blue Climate Solutions, USA; Blue Ventures, UK; GRID-Arendal, Norway; Kenyan Marine Fisheries Research institute, Kenya; The Ocean Foundation, USA; Department of Ecology, Environment and Plant Sciences, Stockholm University, Sweden; Coral Reef Futures Lab, University of Miami, USA; Saint Lucia National Trust, Saint Lucia; WiLDCOAST/COSTASALVAjE, Mexico. 

Your sign-on would greatly help us advance this important issue. Please join us!

Best regards, Steven Lutz
Blue Carbon Programme Leader, GRID-Adrenal, Norway, Tel: +47 941 69 696, Skype: steven.lutz7

Code of Conduct for Blue Carbon

In the development and advancing of blue carbon projects, where possible, we commit to support and embrace the following:

1. Fair conservation governance and decision-making processes
- Ensure recognition of and respect for the presence and rights of local communities, indigenous people, traditional users and marginalized populations.
- Facilitate decisions through participatory processes, which are inclusive of stakeholders and rights-holders and give equal voice – irrespective of gender, ethnicity, ability, age, language, religion, socioeconomic status or nationality.
- Follow due process and respect the right of self-determination for sovereign nations and autonomous groups.
- Document free, prior and informed consent.
- Ensure availability of adequate resources and capacity to support collaboration during planning stages and in effective management.
2. Socially-just conservation actions and outcomes
- Protect inherent and fundamental human rights, dignity and freedoms.
- Recognize and respect local tenure and indigenous rights to resources, traditional and cultural practices, including affirming existing areas and territories conserved and sustainably used by indigenous peoples and local communities.
- Protect intellectual property and cultural diversity and heritage.
- Consider the needs and aspirations of stakeholders and rights holders to maintain and make efforts to increase social wellbeing.
- Maintain food and livelihood security for local people and communities.
- Promote equitable distribution of benefits and costs, including fair access and benefit sharing agreements.
- Ensure that actions taken increase environmental sustainability and the provisioning of ecosystem goods and services.
3. Accountable conservation initiatives and organizations.
- Employ a process of planning, iterative learning and adaptive management based on social considerations, including incorporating lessons from past mistakes in future initiatives.
- Commit to adhering to these principles and adopt a policy of transparency and accountability that includes a system of downward accountability, independent auditing and graduated sanctions for transgressions.
- Enable access to fair mechanisms for conflict resolution and remediation or redress where needed.

Code of Conduct reference:
Bennett, et. al. 2017. An appeal for a code of conduct for marine conservation, Marine Policy, 81. DOI: 10.1016/j.marpol.2017.03.035

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