Following the successful 2016 edition hosted by the USA, the 2017 Our Ocean Conference, hosted by the EU, took place in Malta on 5 and 6 October 2017 and was attended by a large number of eminent persons, senior government representatives, civil society and the private sector. The Our Ocean Conference aims to mobilize joint solutions and to secure ambitious commitments towards the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans. Indeed, the event in Malta delivered an extraordinary level of commitments and results relevant to the achievement of SDG14, including in the Mediterranean region: 437 tangible and measurable commitments; EUR 7,270,361,251 in financial pledges; 2,554,234 square kilometres of additional Marine Protected Areas.
Mr. Gaetano Leone, Coordinator of the UN Environment/Mediterranean Action Plan-Barcelona Convention Secretariat participated in the conference with numerous activities, including as a panelist at the WWF side-event for the launch the WWF report entitled "Reviving the Economy of the Mediterranean Sea". He also welcomed participants at the UNEP/MAP-Barcelona Convention “White Table”, an interactive installation which provided information about the ecosystem approach in the Mediterranean as well as the Specially Protected Areas of Mediterranean Importance. Mr. Leone also presented the Mediterranean perspective of environmental conservation and sustainable development in an interfaith dialogue that took place on the eve of the Conference.