Stephanie Martin joins UK delegation in Portugal

Tristan represented at UN Ocean Conference

Report and photos

Tristan Government

Environmental and Conservation

Policy Officer

Stephanie Martin

UN Ocean Conference, Lisbon, Portugal 27 June-1 July 2022

The second United Nations high-level Ocean conference was held in Lisbon, Portugal, during the last week of June. Trevor Glass, Head of the Conservation Department and I were honoured to be part of the UK delegation. (Unfortunately, Trevor became ill and was unable to attend) The Blue Belt program sponsored me as part of my role as the UKOT rep to the Blue Belt Steering Group. Many sessions were relevant to Tristan da Cunha's Marine Protection Zone and other UKOTs marine programs. One of the week's highlights was one session about Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing co-chaired by Lord Goldsmith.   Lord Goldsmith talked about the Blue Belt program and, at the end of the session, specially named the Tristan Community as an example of the incredible work happening in the UKOTs as champions of the environment!

Stephanie Martin (Centre) is joined by
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) Minister Rebecca Pow (right)
and Holly Mennel, also from DEFRA (left)
  for this photograph where they are framed by one of the conference's posters.

In the evening I attended receptions with leaders from South Pacific Islands and other Small Island Developing States (SIDS) to discuss common ocean challenges, including climate change impacts.

I was honored to have lunch with Minister Rebecca Pow (then the appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) and the UK Ambassador to Portugal, Chris Sainty. They both asked many questions about Tristan da Cunha and the community. It was a wonderful and a bit intense week, but I am grateful for the opportunity to continue to share all the important environmental work happening in Tristan! #smallislandBIGIMPACT

Stephanie with the UK Ambassador to Portugal, Chris Sainty.