Coastal 500 a global finalist for Earthshot Prize

Philippine Tribune
Philippine Tribune

THE Philippine-based Coastal 500 has been chosen as one of the three global finalists for the category “Revive Our Oceans” in the 2023 Earthshot Prize which will be held at its annual awards ceremony in Singapore this November.

Having emerged from more than a thousand nominees, Coastal 500 is a global network of mayors and local leaders who have come together to protect the world’s coastlines. Launched by nonprofit Rare, its 164 members represent eight developing countries and 1.6 million people living near coastlines across the tropics, including some of the communities most at risk from climate change worldwide. Right now, members hail from the Philippines, Indonesia, Brazil, the Federated State of Micronesia, Guatemala, Honduras, Mozambique and Palau.

Coastal 500 was included among Earthshot’s 15 finalists composed of global innovators, entrepreneurs, community leaders and activists working to find cutting-edge solutions to climate change. Each of the finalists will be in the running to receive one of the five 1 million pounds prizes awarded at the third-annual Earthshot Prize awards ceremony.

Since its inception in 2021, the quickly growing group has become a vital forum for sharing ideas, enforcing conservation policies and advocating for coastal protection nationally and globally. Coastal 500 members all take a pledge to encourage healthy fishing communities by empowering their people with clear access rights to fisheries and supporting good local governance and leadership.

Rocky Sanchez Tirona, program lead for Fish Forever, Rare, said of the nomination: “We cannot protect coastal ecosystems and communities, particularly in the Global South, without the support of local political leaders. This is the collective mission of Coastal 500, whose signatories are transforming the lives of the people who call coasts home. Thank you to The Earthshot Prize for supporting us as we continue to revive coastal life.”

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Founded by Prince William in 2020, The Earthshot Prize aims to discover and help scale the world’s most innovative climate and environmental solutions to protect and restore the planet. The Prize is centered around five simple but aspirational goals to ensure that communities, oceans and ecosystems can thrive together in harmony for generations to come: 1) Protect and Restore Nature; 2) Clean Our Air; 3) Revive Our Oceans; 4) Build A Waste-free World and 5) Fix Our Climate.

Global panel of judges

In addition to their eligibility for the 1 million pounds prize, all finalists will receive mentorship, resources and technical support from the yearlong Earthshot Prize Fellowship Program, for each cohort of 15 finalists to accelerate the growth of their groundbreaking solutions. That support includes access to the Prize’s robust network of influential businesses, investors and climate experts, including The Earthshot Prize’s Global Alliance of Partners, composed of some of the world’s largest businesses, donors, investors and environmental organizations committed to climate action.

The other finalists for the Earthshot Prize to Revive Our Oceans are Abalobi in South Africa which works with small fishing communities to record their catch data and to ensure a fair and improved livelihood from sustainable fishing; and WildAid Marine Program, a global nonprofit organization that uses partnership-building and knowledge-sharing to address the world’s ocean conservation needs.

Following a rigorous nomination and vetting process, the 15 finalists were selected by The Earthshot Prize’s Expert Advisory Panel, a global panel of 59 scientific, academic and subject matter experts.

The five winners of this year’s Prize will be selected by His Royal Highness Prince William and the Earthshot Prize Council, a global body of activists, experts and influencers championing urgent and innovative action to protect the climate and natural environment. The Earthshot Prize Council is chaired by The Earthshot Prize Board of Trustees chairman, Christiana Figueres DBE, architect of the Paris Agreement.

The Earthshot Prize Council Members include Prince William, Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah, Cate Blanchett, Sir David Attenborough, Ernest Gibson, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Indra Nooyi, Jack Ma, Luisa Neubauer, Naoko Yamazaki, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Shakira Mebarak, Stella McCartney and Yao Ming.

The Earthshot Prize awards ceremony will take place on November 7 in Singapore. It will air around the world via broadcast partners to be announced in due course.

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