A Greenpeace ship has docked at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town while on an expedition to create awareness about the importance of the oceans and their protection.
The ship called the Arctic Sunrise, will berth in Cape Town until Sunday 20 October to provide a platform for deeper engagement and dialogue in understanding national climate and ocean issues, reports IOL.
It will also embark on a three-week voyage to Seamount Vema, 1600km from Tristan da Cunha and 1000km north-west of Cape Town.
Climate and Energy campaigner for Greenpeace Africa, Bukelwa Nzimande, told IOL that oceans faced a crisis from climate change, plastic, mining and overfishing, and these threats were growing bigger and more urgent every day.
“The threats faced by our oceans cause waves that affect the sustainability of life and our very ability to survive.
“The Arctic Sunrise docking in Cape Town is symbolic of the need for a larger commitment to protect the oceans and fight the climate crisis, and will further illustrate the rich and plentiful marine life in southern Africa.
“The Cape hosts unique and diverse ecosystems, which are a bountiful resource for fisheries and associated fishing communities, and all of them need to be protected,” Nzimande said.
“Over the past few months, we have been collecting stories of hope, joy and defiance from around the world. We are in Cape Town to collect and share more of these stories, and for us to work together to defend the oceans for all future generations,” she said. The ship recently stopped in Dakar, Senegal to create a platform for political engagement about overfishing in the region.”
About the Arctic Sunrise and the Global Oceans Treaty
The Arctic Sunrise, with other ships in the fleet, is reportedly contributing to Greenpeace’s Pole-to-Pole ship tour, the aim of which is to rally support for a Global Oceans Treaty, in which 30% of the world’s oceans will become protected under the UN by 2030.
The project is highlighting the effects of overfishing on local fishing communities in Kalk Bay, the connections between the climate crisis and the biodiversity breakdown in oceans, and providing a platform for political engagement on local ocean issues, building on those raised in the Dakar.
“We will seek solutions to solving these issues in South African coastal areas, and engage key government stakeholders to ensure the government continues to have a progressive position in the Ocean Treaty negotiations, and publicly calls for and supports a strong and progressive global Ocean treaty,” Nzimande said further.