For a Healthy and Productive Ocean

Setting clear and shared expectations industry-wide for ocean sustainability

Sustainable Ocean Principles

Sustainable Ocean Principles

A standard for healthy and productive Ocean

As described in Goal 14 on Life Below Water, there is an urgent need to protect and restore the health of the ocean, which is rapidly deteriorating due to increasing temperatures, acidification, depletion of natural resources and pollution from land and sea. Businesses have a shared responsibility, alongside Government and civil society, to take necessary actions to secure a healthy ocean.

These Sustainable Ocean Principles, produced in consultation with over 300 stakeholders, provide a framework for responsible business practices across sectors and geographies. They build upon and supplement the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact on human rights, labour, environment and anti-corruption.

Signatories of the Principles

Sign the Sustainable Ocean Principles

5 tipping points for Ocean

Deliver on the 17 Goals

Based on the «Global Goals, Ocean Opportunities Report», produced in consultation with over 300 stakeholders, the following five tipping points provide a set of tangible objectives to address ocean sustainability challenges:

  • Fully traceable sustainable seafood
  • Set sail for zero
  • Harnessing Ocean electricity
  • Mapping the Ocean
  • Zero waste entering the Ocean

A sustainable ocean also makes good business sense. Ensuring a healthy and sustainable marine environment is not only necessary for ocean companies to continue to operate in the long-term, innovating and investing in new ocean solutions also provides a significant business opportunity. In the lead-up to the second UN Ocean Conference in Portugal in 2020, and as we approach the decade of delivery for the Global Goals, much more work must be done, and all companies have to put their hands on deck if we want to succeed.

5 Tipping Points Brochure

Global Goals, Ocean Opportunities

The Ocean to propel the Global Goals

To solve the ocean challenge, the UN Global Compact Sustainable Ocean Business Action Platform is proud to launch the Global Goals, Ocean Opportunities report — laying out how the ocean can be the key to achieving the Global Goals.

All sectors of society must work together to leverage ocean sustainability, not only to protect the ocean itself, but to ensure people and planet can prosper and thrive. Through our Action Platform on Sustainable Ocean Business, the UN Global Compact will continue to work with all partners to drive business action for the ocean, helping to fulfil the core promise of the 2030 Agenda: leave no one behind.


UN Global Compact Urges Businesses to Take Fast Action on Ocean Health, Triple Pundit

Sustainable Ocean Principles – a collective industry response to a global challenge, Gard

The UN Wants Companies to Stop Ruining the Ocean, Global Citizen

Press Release Our Ocean Conference 2019

United Nations Global Compact launches principles for sustainable ocean business

The private sector must take urgent action to stop the deterioration of ocean health, says new report

Executive Update: Clear Targets for a Clean Ocean


Mr. Erik Giercksky

Mr. Ignace Beguin

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