The Ocean Economy in 2030

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This report explores the growth prospects for the ocean economy, its capacity for future employment creation and innovation, and its role in addressing global challenges. Special attention is devoted to the emerging ocean-based industries in light of their high growth and innovation potential, and contribution to addressing challenges such as energy security, environment, climate change and food security.


The report examines the risks and uncertainties surrounding the future development of ocean industries, the innovations required in science and technology to support their progress, their potential contribution to green growth and some of the implications for ocean management.  Finally, and looking across the future ocean economy as a whole, it explores possible avenues for action that could boost its long-term development prospects while managing the use of the ocean itself in responsible, sustainable ways.


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Global trends and uncertainties to 2030/2060

The ocean economy is key to the future welfare and prosperity of humankind. But unsustainable use of the ocean and its resources threatens the very basis on which much of that welfare and prosperity depend. This chapter briefly outlines a range of critical global factors and underlying changes which, individually and in combination with one another, are playing their part in shaping the overall context within which the balancing act between ocean use and sustainability is likely to evolve over the coming decades. It is not the aim of this chapter to forecast the future or present a particular scenario. Projections and scenarios are developed elsewhere in this report. Rather, this chapter provides a backdrop for the report’s discussion of future developments in the ocean environment and the ocean economy. It draws primarily, but not exclusively, on OECD materials to discuss key demographic, economic, social, environmental, technological and governance trends, as well as major uncertainties and risks, which could influence world developments and, by extension, that of the ocean economy.

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