The Commonwealth Secretariat has announced the first call for proposals under the newly established Commonwealth Blue Charter Project Incubator.
New technical support and funding is available to governments to support projects that promote ocean protection and marine development, while tackling climate change.
This includes small grants worth between £5,000 ($6,000) and £50,000 ($59,000) targeting a range of activities that support ocean policy and project development – such as training, capacity-building, knowledge exchanges and rapid climate risk or vulnerability assessments.
“49 out of the 56 member countries of the Commonwealth border the ocean, including 25 small island developing states, accounting for more than one third of the ocean under national jurisdiction,” said Commonwealth Secretary-General, Patricia Scotland, speaking at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27).
“The Commonwealth Blue Charter Project Incubator is a critical step forward in supporting these countries in the delivery of their ocean commitments, including those under Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 as well as their Nationally Determined Contributions.
“I strongly encourage member governments to take advantage of this call for applications and submit robust proposals that support the development of sustainable blue economies, while addressing one of the greatest global challenges of our time – climate change.”
The Commonwealth Blue Charter Project Incubator supports the development of governments’ projects under the Commonwealth Blue Charter to accelerate their transition to fair, sustainable, and inclusive marine conservation and maritime development, while mitigating and adapting to climate change.
To apply, countries must be a member of at least one of the 10 Commonwealth Blue Charter Action Groups or indicate their commitment to join.
The deadline for submissions is on 10 January 2023.
The Commonwealth Blue Charter Project Incubator was launched at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in June 2022 and managed by the Commonwealth Secretariat, in close cooperation with Blue Charter members and Action Groups.
The initiative is supported by an initial contribution from the Commonwealth Fund for Technical Cooperation, with additional commitments from Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Vibrant Oceans Initiative.