Seychelles president, Danny Faure has called on world leaders to take action against climate change rather than engage in “blame game”.
The president is one of the few world leaders at the forefront of activism against climate change.
His groundbreaking speech from submersible hundreds of meters below the Indian Ocean surface to highlight the fragility of one of the world’s least explored ecosystems attracted commendation from all over the world.
He made his recent remarks during an interview with The Associated Press. During the interview, the president said small island nations like his are the least responsible for the problem but among the most vulnerable as sea levels rise.
“The science is clear,” he said. “The scientists have spoken. We all know that we have a problem. What is needed is a responsible global action.”
He said the time to act on climate change is now.
Faure recently visited the British-led Nekton Mission, which earlier this year spent seven weeks surveying Seychelles waters. The island nation of fewer than 100,000 people is on track to protect almost a third of its waters by next year, a sea area larger than Germany.
But already rising water temperatures are bleaching Seychelles’ coral reefs. The increased frequency of extreme weather events is another threat. Even plastic waste poses a problem.
The UNESCO World Heritage site of Aldabra, an important turtle nesting site, receives mounds of plastic waste brought on the waves.
“A total of 25,750 kilograms of marine debris was collected, out of which 50,000 single flip flops,” Faure said. “It just shows you the amount of pollution caused by marine debris to one of the pristine sites that we have.”
For the Nekton Mission, marine scientists from the University of Oxford surveyed underwater life, mapped vast areas of the seafloor and ventured deep beneath the waves with manned submersibles and remote vehicles.
The scientists plan to present their research at a summit on the state of the Indian Ocean in 2022.
Researcher Paris Stefanoudis said they are “pretty confident” they have discovered new species, from small zooplankton to soft corals, but the discoveries are yet to be scientifically verified.
“There was an incredible diversity and abundance of fish, especially in protected areas like Aldabra, which shows that marine protected areas do work when they are put in place,” Stefanoudis said.
Header Image Credit: Scroll.in