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Who should be involved in implementing the ecosystem approach?

“We all have a role to play in implementing the ecosystem approach.” (Regional government)

Governments have a duty to implement fully integrated management (in accordance with ecosystem approach principles), in order to guide decision-making on use of sea-space/resources. They must also identify and implement appropriate measures to meet targets (e.g. regulations, strategies, plans, economic instruments, public infrastructure and education) and provide funding and support. Governments must also engage with stakeholders in policy implementation.

Stakeholders can take steps to ensure their activities comply with government policy and targets. They are often ideally placed to understand the issues and potential solutions, and can implement measures on a voluntary basis, and encourage others to do so. The banking and insurance industries can also exert an influence on others, for example, by issuing specific sustainability conditions for loans and insurance policies. Civil society can play an important role too, for example through lobbying, advocacy, research and innovation.

The general public can make a difference, for example, by making more sustainable day-to-day decisions regarding their consumption, resource use and leisure activities. They may also be able to positively influence others (including industry and government) through advocacy, petitioning, reporting of non-compliance and legal action.

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