As the UN Ocean Conference convenes, it's important to acknowledge that the future of the ocean and human prosperity are inextricably intertwined. Although the vast and diverse, the ocean economy is "out of sight and out of mind" for many, even though a broad range of ocean-related economic activities provide critical goods and services to the whole of humanity.
The international community recognized these links when it crafted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The preamble to Agenda 2030 includes a focus on prosperity, ensuring that "all human beings can enjoy prosperous and fulfilling lives and that economic, social and technological progress occurs in harmony with nature." SDG 14 more specifically concentrates on the need to "conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development."