In 2016, we continued our partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) with a $2.5 million financial commitment over a five year period, which started in 2014. TNC is one of the world’s leading conservation organizations, working across all sectors of industry and society to help advance its mission to protect the natural world and develop relationships that best align to produce clear conservation benefits with lasting, measurable outcomes.

Our partnership has been supporting TNC’s Mapping Ocean Wealth (MOW) program. This program creates maps that show the extent and distribution of benefits that habitats like coral reefs and mangroves provide, including fish production, flood mitigation, erosion control and recreation.

Mapping Ocean Wealth (MOW) 2016 performance highlights:

Icon mows mapping portal

Mow’s Mapping Portal

Continued to populate the Ocean Wealth mapping portal with new data to support planning initiatives around the world. Specific progress includes a new map of coral reef fish production for the Bahamas that is being used to design new marine managed areas in the Bahamas to help the country reach its goals under the Caribbean Challenge Initiative.

Icon coral reef map

Coral Reef Map

Developed a global map of coral reef tourism, revealing a staggering $36 billion in annual tourism value generated by on-reef (snorkeling and diving) and reef-adjacent tourism activities such as kite-surfing and beach visits near reefs.

Icon working with noaa

Working with U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Incorporated MOW’s result into a Reef Resilience training sponsored by NOAA’s Coral Reef Conservation Program to help coral reef managers from the Pacific and Caribbean learn how to incorporate ecosystem services information in management decisions and outreach initiatives in their jurisdictions. Managers received hands-on training with the MOW data portal, and explored ways that the spatially-explicit information could help with mitigation of local impacts.

Icon annual meeting

Annual Meeting

MOW’s annual meeting was hosted at Carnival’s headquarters in Miami, U.S. The meeting included research updates in the areas supporting tourism, the coastal ocean’s CO2 sequestration capacity and coastal protection.

Atlas of Ocean Wealth

We are also pleased to be a sponsor of the TNC’s Atlas of Ocean Wealth. The Atlas is the largest collection to date of information about the economic, social and cultural values of coastal and marine habitats from all over the world. It is a synthesis of innovative science, led by TNC, with many partners around the world. Through these efforts, they have gathered vast new datasets from both traditional and unconventional sources.

The work includes more than 35 novel and critically important maps that show how nature’s value to people varies widely from place to place. They also illustrate nature’s potential. These maps show that we can accurately quantify the value of marine resources. Further, by enumerating such values, we can encourage their protection or enhancement for the benefit of people all around the world. The Atlas clearly articulates that not only do we need nature, but how much we need it, and where we need it.

The Atlas was completed and released in June of 2016.

Mapping Ocean Wealth and Tourism

Our oceans and coastal habitats produce a variety of benefits for coastal communities. To help illustrate these benefits, TNC has produced a series of Mapping Ocean Wealth (MOW) infographics with specific quantitative examples about how and where these benefits are produced and delivered. As members of the tourism industry we are proud to support TNC’s MOW.

Ocean habitats provide scuba diving, fishing and other recreational opportunities that attract tourists from around the world.

Coastal communities, planners and the tourism industry should protect and restore the habitats that drive local economies.

Mapping Ocean Wealth demonstrates what the ocean does for us today so that we maximize what the ocean can do for us tomorrow.

To learn more visit www.oceanwealth.org  and follow us @ocean_wealth

nature conservancy infographic