SESSION 1 - Large Marine Species: Keystone of the Marine Ecosystem.
Moderator: Lisa Speer, Oceans Program Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council, USA
With the Principality of Monaco and HSH Prince Albert II leading the global campaign to protect the endangered bluefin tuna and other marine predators, it was only appropriate that the first Monaco Blue Initiative should address this issue. Large marine predators are essential to the stability and health of marine ecosystems as a whole, and time is of the essence.
SESSION 2 - The Deep Sea: New Biodiversity in Need of Protection
Moderator: Dr. Monica Verbeek, Executive Director, SEAS AT RISK (Netherlands)
The biodiversity of the ocean depths is of staggering richness. Exploration of these zones has been compared with that of outer space. While known to play an important role in climate and marine ecosystem regulation, they are also attracting attention from the petrochemical, pharmaceutical, biotech and fishing industries. Throughout history, new frontiers have often developed outside of the law. Given what is at stake, it is urgent to define a framework for future exploitation and protection of the deep sea space.