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A blue new deal…

  • by JW

A new language, a lexicon of blue that includes terms like blue economy, blue new deal, blue co-ops, blue carbon and blue biotech.


The Devon Maritime Forum is putting on several on-line seminars:

“As we begin to think and move beyond our initial response to the recovery stage of the COVID-19 crisis, many environmental NGOs, economists, health professionals and the government’s own statutory advisers have been calling for a ‘green recovery’ to address the linked challenges of public health and well-being, the climate emergency, and biodiversity loss.

“In a similar vein, for a county like Devon and a region like the South West, we might also want to think and talk about the notion of a ‘blue recovery’: what that might entail and look like, and how we can collectively plan for and enable a happier, healthier, cleaner, greener marine.”

A Blue Recovery: “a healthier, cleaner, greener marine” – Vision Group for Sidmouth


Others are looking to a ‘blue recovery’…


A year ago, the Axe and Otter estuaries became one of the 12 new Marine Conservation Zones created in the south west of England, with the expansion of the UK’s ‘Blue Belt’:

New Marine Conservations Zones created | Midweek Herald

Meanwhile, an independent review led by former Fisheries Minister Richard Benyon, and published on World Ocean Day last month, calls for the introduction of Highly Protected Marine Areas in English waters which includes Lyme Bay as a case study:

Independent review backs introduction of Highly Protected Marine Areas – GOV.UK


There’s plenty of action against marine pollution:

Surfers Against Sewage | Environmental charity tackling plastic pollution

With groups in East Devon determined to make a difference:

Sidmouth Plastic Warriors public group | Facebook

Plastic Free Exmouth (UK) public group | Facebook


There’s a focussed project from the New Economics Foundation – promoting local initiatives along our coasts:

Blue New Deal


Unfortunately, in the States, this has become highly politicized – but at least they’re talking about a comprehensive look at the health of our oceans:

Blue New Deal by Elizabeth Warren – Elizabeth Warren Plans

Opinion | We need a Blue New Deal to protect our oceans – The Washington Post

An Environmental Lawyer Explains Where Elizabeth Warren’s Blue New Deal Falls Short – Mother Jones


However, science not only maps out the ocean in dire straits, but also shows that “it offers major opportunities to abandon fossil fuels, sequester tons of carbon, and create a sustainable food system: renewable offshore energy and algae biofuel,  coastal ecosystems and regenerative ocean farming.”

To Save the Climate, Look to the Oceans – Scientific American Blog Network

‘We Need to Protect the Ocean Before it’s Too Late’ | Chatham House


And in the UK, there are some grounded ideas which have been developing over the last weeks, for example:


kelp forest

“IF you take one square metre of seaweed, of kelp forest, it will capture five times more carbon than any land forest,” says visionary marine geologist Pierre Erwes.

The kelp plant, whose floating ribbons we often see wafting at the ocean’s edge, is extremely efficient at “drawing down” CO2 from the atmosphere. That is why the survival of kelp forests is so crucial – to hit our carbon targets we need to both reduce our emissions and draw down those already out there. It’s also why kelp is as the heart of a growing push towards what is being called the blue economy.

Erwes is one of many international and local speakers gathering in Oban  for a Scottish Seaweed Industry Association conference titled Kickstarting The Seaweed Economy. He and others will create a conversation over seaweed in a seemingly new language, a lexicon of blue that includes terms like blue economy, blue new deal, blue co-ops, blue carbon and blue biotech.

It will be about how Scotland can create jobs in rural communities, manufacture revolutionary products and combat climate change at the same time. In Erwes’ view, seaweed is “one of the key elements on Earth – we are just approaching the potential of this amazing organism”…

A cry for kelp. Why Scotland’s green future could be blue | HeraldScotland