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COP23: Oceans protection priority in fight against climate change

COP23: 'Ocean protection should be more of a priority in fighting climate change,' EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Karmenu Vella tells Euronews

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COP23: Oceans protection priority in fight against climate change

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The oceans play a key role in climate change and it is impossible to separate one from another says the EU Commissioner for environment, maritime affairs and fisheries.

On OceansActionDay at COP23 Euronews talked to EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Karmenu Vella about why ocean protection should be more of a priority in fighting climate change.

“The oceans are very much the prime regulators of climate, they are absorbing 90 percent of the planet’s heat.” he said.

“They are absorbing 30 percent of the planet’s carbon dioxide, they are giving the planet 50 percent of the oxygen that we need, they will have to take all the melted ice when it become water. So we are getting all these benefits from the oceans.”

As the sea absorbs more CO2, it is becoming warmer and more acid.

This has led to coral bleaching across the world, with around 70 percent of coral dying in some regions.