San Francisco, California was host to the Economist’s second World Ocean Summit at the end of February 2014, a three-day event designed to highlight the risks bought about by ocean degradation and help shape debate about governance of the ocean.

Attended by global leaders from government, business, international organisations, NGOs, think tanks and academia, the summit focused on the increasing role of the ocean as an economic frontier, the importance of sustainability and the issue of governance. Among the speakers at the conference was WWL’s CEO Christopher Connor, who participated in a panel discussion entitled "Governance in the21st Century".

Connor spoke on the topic of environmental regulations. In order to truly succeed, Connor argued, regulations ideally need to be global, to reflect the borderless nature of the ocean itself. In addition, enforcement is key. He emphasised that no matter how stringent regulations are, if they cannot or are not being enforced they will not have the desired impact. Enforcement is also key to the development of new technologies to make environmental progress possible, Connor added. Without proper enforcement investors and entrepreneurs cannot trust that the markets for their products will materialise. 

These word effectively launched the Trident Alliance initiative, a group of like-minded companies in the shipping industry dedicated to the enforcement of sulphur regulations. The alliance calls for robust enforcement for the benefit of the environment, human health and responsible energy.