When We Protect Our Environment We Foster Peace

On June 9th a dinner on polar protection and leadership with a focus on the Ross Sea was held in Moscow. All ambassadors from the CCAMLR countries were invited and it was hosted by UNEP Patron of the Oceans, Lewis Pugh and José María Figueres (former President of Costa Rica and former Co-Chair of the Global Ocean Commission) both spoke.

The dinner also featured a video message from Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Extracts from the speech:

"I am from south Africa, that might seem far away but in fact its our neighbour and what happens in antarctica will affect all of us".

"Antarctica is the most untouched continent on earth, it gives scientists insights that they can find nowhere else on our planet".

"When we overfish, we destroy one of the last true wilderness areas on earth, we will leave our children poor in resources and spirit"

"At the height of the cold war, the Soviet Union, the U.S.A., and ten other nations that governed the continent, including my own put aside their differences and had the forsite to set aside the continent as a place dedicated to peace and science".

"We must never forget that we are stewards of this beautiful earth, not masters"

Lewis Pugh swam in the frigid waters of the Ross Sea last year and then went to Russia to talk about his exploits. He has met several senior leaders in Russia, including Mr Chilingarov and Minister Shoygu.

This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post in partnership with Ocean Unite, an initiative to unite and activate powerful voices for ocean-conservation action. The series is being produced to coincide with World Ocean Day (June 8), as part of HuffPost's "What's Working" initiative, putting a spotlight on initiatives around the world that are solutions oriented. To read all the posts in the series, read here. Follow the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #MakeASplash and #SaveRossSea.