The 2019 Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean

HSH Prince Albert (center) with the stars on the blue carpet.
HSH Prince Albert (center) with the stars on the blue carpet.

Star power supports the Prince Albert Foundation’s initiatives on saving the ocean

BY OLIVIA DECKER

The Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean 2019 took place during the Monaco Yacht Show on September 26 at the Terraces of the Opera Garnier. HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco hosted the event along with Global Fundraising Chairman Milutin Gatsby, and Simon de Pury conducted the auction with Patricia Arquette and Chris Tucker on stage to present unique, bespoke auction items. Nicole Kidman, Uma Thurman, and Andy Garcia served as Masters of Ceremony. Performances by Gwen Stefani, Andrea Bocelli, and Kool & the Gang with Robin Thicke singing enlivened the after-party.

Chris Tucker
Chris Tucker

Actor, producer, and director Robert Redford was presented with the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation Special Award in recognition of his lifelong efforts for environmental protection. HSH Prince Albert said, “We are delighted to honor Robert Redford, who has highly contributed to raising awareness about the environmental challenges the world is facing. He is a long-time champion for climate change action, and it is our privilege to celebrate his life’s work.” Accepting the prize, Mr. Redford said, “The information we’ve heard over the course of the last few days, coming out of the United Nations report on the health of our oceans, is yet another reminder that our window of opportunity to change course is sadly narrowing each and every day. If ever there was a time to raise awareness and inspire actions, it is right now. This is it. This is our only planet. This may be our last chance.”

Gwen Stefani
Gwen Stefani

In his speech, HSH Prince Albert highlighted that the Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean was the closing event of a very special week dedicated to the ocean with the launch of the IPCC Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere and the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Action Summit. “This is the time for collective responsibility, a shared commitment, a joint undertaking. This is time for generosity. This is the stage we are at this evening, and it is why I am particularly happy to welcome you all. [I am] particularly grateful to witness your commitment once again this year, particularly proud of being able to continue with you, and, thanks to you, the wonderful work that was carried out after the last two galas,” declared HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco.

Andy Garcia
Andy Garcia

According to the Foundation’s report, the global ocean produces 50 percent of the oxygen we breathe and absorbs 25 percent of the world’s gas emissions. Today, based on the gross marine product, the ocean is the seventh largest economy in the world, and the overall estimated value of key ocean assets represents more than $24 trillion. Yet the global ocean is threatened by the effects of climate change, plastic pollution, and overfishing. Only 4 percent of the global ocean enjoys protected status. Besides, if current fishing rates continue, the world’s fisheries will collapse by 2048, and at current rates of temperature rise, coral reefs will disappear by 2050. Emblematic marine species are also threatened with extinction, such as sharks with 100 million kills every year. Facing this global challenge of unprecedented magnitude, the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation is taking action to curb the trend and promote a sustainable ocean to create a new alliance between humanity and the ocean.

Uma Thurman
Uma Thurman

The Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean 2018 raised over $25 million and enabled the Foundation to provide multi-annual support to marine conservation projects worldwide. The 2019 Monte-Carlo Gala focused on eight priority initiatives: fighting against plastic pollution; developing the Mediterranean Trust Fund for Marine Protected Areas; conserving marine species facing a risk of extinction; expanding marine protected areas in the polar regions; mitigating ocean’s acidification; supporting innovations to challenge marine threats; favoring sustainable yachting practices; and promoting environmental education.

Andrea Bocelli
Andrea Bocelli

To spotlight global attention on the serious crisis of our oceans, the Prince Albert Foundation’s 2019 ocean-saving events brought together global policymakers, philanthropists, business leaders, scientists, and celebrities from around the world, uniting their forces to provide solutions to the crisis facing our ocean. The Monte Carlo Gala for Global Ocean raised over $26 million this year. All proceeds from the Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean and its auction support the Foundation’s Ocean initiatives.

Robin Thicke
Robin Thicke

Robert Redford said: “I am honored to be recognized by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and his foundation. The prince’s tireless leadership in the fight to preserve and protect our oceans sets an example we all should follow. It’s our responsibility to work together to overcome the challenges before us in the fight to save our oceans—and, in turn, our planet.”

Robert Redford
Robert Redford

Mr. Redford has devoted his career to spurring meaningful change through the power of media. In his films — including: All the President’s Men, The Candidate, Quiz Show, Out of Africa, and Truth — there have always been underlying messages of responsibility and advocacy, whether for the truth itself or for the preservation of Earth and those who inhabit it.

In 1981, Mr. Redford founded the Sundance Institute and the annual Sundance Film Festival, attracting a global audience to the works of emerging artists in independent films. Such work “driven by individual, authentic voice can awaken new ideas that have the power to delight and entertain, push creative boundaries, spark new levels of empathy and understanding and even lead to social change.”

In 2005, Mr. Redford and his son, James Redford, established the Redford Center dedicated to harnessing the power of film, video, and new media to engage people through inspiring stories that galvanize environmental action.

In December 2015, Mr. Redford delivered an inspiring message at the UN Assembly before the Paris COP21 on behalf of the National Resources Defense Council of which he has been a trustee for over 40 years. Premiering at the COP21 events was a short film illuminating the decades-long environmental advocacy work of Robert Redford and his core belief that “Art and nature combined make the world a better place.”

Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean Dinner
Monte-Carlo Gala for the Global Ocean Dinner
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