The largest ecological and humanitarian crisis in history is at our doorstep. According to Philip Alston, the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, hundreds of millions face impoverishment, widespread displacement and hunger, with the most severe impact in poor countries and regions that have contributed the least to the crisis. The sheer scale of the impending disaster calls us to step out of our status quo mindset and meet the needs of the moment with compassion, courage and forward thinking. MAPS, the Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary, is an immediate and effective response, one the whole world needs now more than ever.
MAPS establishes all ocean waters north of the Arctic Circle as an international marine protected area free from natural resource exploitation, commercialization and militarization, promoting a peaceful and healthy Arctic Ocean ecosystem for the benefit of the entire world. The Arctic Ocean ice is our planet’s air conditioning system. Its ice balances weather patterns globally so that we have the food and resources we need to survive. But it is melting fast. With 75% less summer ice than just half a century ago, and the open ocean absorbing 90% of the sun’s rays, parts of the Arctic Ocean are now 4C/7F too hot.
The implications of such dramatic changes are enormous. A melted Arctic Ocean cannot maintain the Earth’s climate equilibrium, resulting in more frequent and intense weather events, threatened food production and water supply, poverty, disease, more climate refugees and ever-increasing suffering. Yet, instead of recognizing the loss of the Arctic sea ice as the global emergency that it is, corporations and governments are lining up to take advantage of the newly open waters.
Led by its founder and CEO, the award-winning musician, author and activist Parvati, the all-volunteer international non-profit organization Parvati.org created the international Marine Arctic Peace Sanctuary (MAPS) Treaty to protect this key and vulnerable region by transforming it into the world’s largest preservation area. The MAPS Treaty has been translated into all official UN languages, provided to all 193 UN member states, and shared with officials at major UN conferences since 2015. MAPS stops Arctic exploitation while compelling a global shift to renewables, protecting remaining sea ice from destruction and befoulment caused by commercial and military traffic. With signatures from 99 countries, the MAPS Treaty enters into force, protecting all life on Earth for generations to come. It has already been signed by Samoa and the Cook Islands.
At this pivotal moment in human history, we no longer have time for anything but bold and decisive action to protect our shared future. That’s why Parvati.org is now finalizing an innovative global education strategy (GES) that harnesses the exponential power of modern media to cool minds, lighten footprints, and awaken an inevitable call for MAPS. Everyone has the right to know a healthy world is possible, so they can put pressure on their leaders to sign the MAPS Treaty immediately.
“There is no safe place on Earth if the vulnerable Arctic Ocean is exploited,” says Parvati. “We must speak up now for our common good and call for immediate protection of the Arctic sea ice, our planet’s air conditioner. The ice isn’t waiting, and neither can we.”
Citizens of all nations are urged to sign and share the MAPS petition at https://parvati.org, and to call on their world leaders to sign the MAPS Treaty immediately.