John Podesta Joins Global Ocean Commission

Jun 28, 2013, 18:21 ET from Global Ocean Commission

NEW YORK, June 28, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

The Global Ocean Commission is pleased to announce that John Podesta, Chair of the Center for American Progress and a former White House Chief of Staff, is joining the Commission.

A native of Chicago, Mr Podesta served as Counsel to several Congressional committees before joining the White House staff in 1993. He served as President Bill Clinton's Chief of Staff from 1998 to 2001.

In 2003, Mr Podesta founded the Center for American Progress (CAP), a progressive think-tank based in Washington DC. He currently serves on the UN High-Level Panel on the post-2015 Development Agenda, and as a member of the Joint Ocean Commission Initiative, a body formed following the release of two high-profile reports on US ocean policy in 2003 and 2004.

'I am delighted to be joining the Global Ocean Commission, which I see as one of the most dynamic initiatives developing commonsense ways to manage fully 45% of the globe that remains common property, outside any national jurisdiction,' said Mr Podesta.

'For much of my career I have worked to advance issues relevant to the Commission such as global food security, equity, national security, resource protection and global resilience; and I look forward to making further progress on them with the Commission.'

In an article in the San Jose Mercury News, Mr Podesta argues that responsible stewardship of the high seas is essential in our increasingly interconnected, globalised world.

Launched in February 2013, the Global Ocean Commission is an independent, high-level initiative aiming to reverse degradation of the high seas - the internationally managed waters that make up 45% of the Earth's surface - and restore them to full health and productivity.

It is jointly chaired by former Costa Rican President José María Figueres; Trevor Manuel, South African Minister in the Presidency and former Finance Minister; and David Miliband, former UK Foreign Secretary and incoming President of the International Rescue Committee.

'We're very glad to welcome John Podesta on board as we move forward on our journey,' said Mr Figueres.

'He has long been a prominent advocate for action on climate change, and we look forward to engaging with him on the future of the ocean, an issue that is intimately tied to climate change in so many ways.'

David Miliband said: 'I've known John Podesta for many years, and have no doubt that he will bring as much insight to the global ocean as he does to issues such as security, foreign policy and the economy.'

Mr Manuel added: 'It's essential that the United States, as a major economic power and a major ocean power, has a voice on the Commission, and John's will be the constructive voice that we need.'

Notes to editors:

The Global Ocean Commission originated as an initiative of the Pew Environment Group, in partnership with Somerville College at the University of Oxford, Adessium Foundation and Oceans 5. It is supported by the Pew Charitable Trusts, Adessium Foundation and Oceans 5, but is independent of all. It is hosted by Somerville College.

The Center for American Progress is an independent nonpartisan educational institute dedicated to improving the lives of Americans through progressive ideas and action. Building on the achievements of progressive pioneers such as Teddy Roosevelt and Martin Luther King, its work addresses 21st-century challenges such as energy, national security, economic growth and opportunity, immigration, education, and health care.

Media contacts (Global Ocean Commission):

Richard Black, +44-7912-583328

Inés de Agueda, +34-667-01-94-75

Nick Steel, +44-20-7061-6328; +44-7830-185072

Media contacts (Center for American Progress):

Anne Shoup, (+1)-202-481-7146

SOURCE Global Ocean Commission