Ocean conservation, research and sustainable development are alarmingly underfunded worldwide. Despite covering more than 70% of the planet, the ocean remains “out of sight, out of mind” for many. The lack of investment in the ocean is self-evident and truly concerning. Of all the Sustainable Development Goals, SDG 14 on the ocean is by far the least funded, representing a minuscule 0.01% of all SDG funding from development finance up to 2019, and only 0.56% of all philanthropic funding since 2016.
Nonetheless, there are some developments that should give us hope. The GCF has recently invested in the Global Fund for Coral Reefs, and philanthropic funding for marine conservation has doubled over the past decade, from US$520m in 2010 to US$1.2bn in 2020.