Sargasso Sea Commission Celebrates the Fifth Anniversary of the Hamilton Declaration

Monday, March 11, 2019

This week, the Sargasso Sea Commission returns to Bermuda to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the signing of the Hamilton Declaration on Collaboration for the Conservation of the Sargasso Sea, alongside its Signatory governments and collaborating partners. To coincide with this milestone, the Sargasso Sea Commission is hosting a workshop at the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences, to discuss 'Next Steps to Strengthen Stewardship of the Sargasso Sea', from 13-15 March 2019.

Deputy Premier and Minister of Home Affairs, the Hon. Walter Roban JP MP said, “Having participated in the initial negotiations, I am pleased to see the Sargasso Sea Commission return to Bermuda for this occasion.” Minister Roban will be opening the meeting with welcome remarks on 13March.

The Hamilton Declaration established the Commission on March 11, 2014 to encourage and facilitate voluntary collaboration toward the conservation of the Sargasso Sea.

“Over the last five years, the Commission has seen a number of successes, and we look forward to the next steps”, said Executive Secretary Dr. David Freestone.

“The Government of Canada understands the importance of conserving and protecting biodiversity and marine environments," said the Hon. Jonathan Wilkinson, Canada's Minister of Fisheries, Oceans, and the Canadian Coast Guard. "We support the work the Commission is undertaking this anniversary year. We remain steadfast in working with our global partners to strengthen the long-term viability of the Sargasso Sea ecosystem for future generations."

The Commission has no management authority, but is mandated a stewardship role for the Sargasso Sea, to keep its health, productivity and resilience under continual review. Since the signing of the Hamilton Declaration five years ago, the number of Signatories has doubled, and now includes Bermuda, the Azores, the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands, Canada, the Cayman Islands, the Dominican Republic, Monaco, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

'Next Steps to Strengthen Stewardship of the Sargasso Sea' was made possible through generous support from Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Government of Bermuda.

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