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As an island nation, the ocean is an unsung hero in our fight against climate change and has huge economic and social value for the UK. Our new report shows that ocean recovery could bring benefits worth at least £50 billion by 2050, and has the potential to create up to 100,000 jobs. Current government estimates suggested that maritime activities including tourism, shipping, fisheries and renewable energy contribute £47 billion to the British economy annually.

But our seas are in trouble. In 2019, UK seas failed to meet government standards on good environmental health against 11 out of 15 indicators, including those relating to birds, fish and seabed habitats.

The Value of Restored UK Seas report explores the benefits of restoring UK seas back to health, both in tackling the growing climate emergency and increasing the ocean’s economic contribution to the UK as an island nation.


Restoring lost coastal ecosystems

Fully protecting a third of UK Seas

Climate and nature positive fisheries and seafood

Supporting net-zero climate action

Protecting and effectively managing blue carbon ecosystems to realise the full value to society – a sea of opportunities.

An opinion piece on blue carbon by Professor Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair for the World Commission on Protected Areas, exploring how natural marine ecosystems like seagrass and saltmarshes can help in the fight against climate change, provide food and habitats for many species, but only if we protect and restore them effectively.