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The ocean is essential to tackling climate change. So why has it been neglected in global climate talks?

Climate change is commonly discussed as though it’s a uniquely atmospheric phenomena. But the crisis is deeply entwined with the ocean, and this has largely been neglected in international climate talks.

The latest international climate negotiations made some progress by, for the first time, anchoring oceans permanently into the multilateral climate change regime. But the Glasgow Climate Pact is still leagues from where it needs to be to adequately reflect the importance of oceans to our climate system.

Most countries have targets for land-based emissions – but there are no such targets for oceans. Yet the ocean plays a vital role in helping balance the conditions humans and most other species need to survive, while also offering a substantial part of the solution to stop the planet warming over the crucial limit of 1.5℃ this century.

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