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Pledges at int'l ocean meeting in Norway reach $64 billion

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Norway's foreign minister says countries at a two-day conference have pledged at least 583 billion kroner ($64 billion) toward protecting the oceans. Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Soereide says a total of 370 pledges were made at the Our Ocean conference that ended Thursday in Oslo.

She says, "every second breath we take comes from phytoplankton in the ocean, and it is urgent to improve the state of the ocean." Eriksen Soereide says the theme of the conference attended by representatives from 100 countries was "the state of the sea and measures to ensure healthy, clean and productive seas."

The United States announced 23 new commitments valued at $1.21 billion to promote sustainable fisheries; combat marine debris; and support marine science, observation and exploration.

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