UN General Assembly adopts resolution to move forward with high seas treaty negotiations

first_imgThe General Assembly of the United Nations adopted a resolution on Sunday to convene negotiations for an international treaty to protect the marine environments of the high seas.Earth’s high seas represent about two-thirds of the oceans, but are not governed by any one international body or agency and there is currently no comprehensive management structure in place to protect the marine life that relies on them.According to the Pew Charitable Trusts, the treaty would be the first international agreement to address the impacts of human activities like fishing and shipping on the high seas. The General Assembly of the United Nations adopted a resolution on Sunday to convene negotiations for an international treaty to protect the marine environments of the high seas.Vast areas of ocean that lie outside any country’s exclusive economic zone — or, in other words, more than 200 nautical miles or more from any country’s shores — the high seas are areas of Earth’s oceans that lie beyond all national jurisdiction. They represent about two-thirds of the oceans, but the high seas are not governed by any one international body or agency and there is currently no comprehensive management structure in place to protect the marine life that relies on them.According to the Pew Charitable Trusts, the treaty would be the first international agreement to address the impacts of human activities like fishing and shipping on the high seas. It would not only create a global system for coordinating the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity, but would also pave the way for the creation of marine protected areas (MPAs) and fully protected marine reserves in open waters.The UN reports reports that, as of 2017, 5.3 percent of the total global ocean area has been protected. That includes 13.2 percent of marine environments that fall under national jurisdiction, but just 0.25 percent of marine environments beyond national jurisdiction.Pew’s Liz Karan told Mongabay that high seas fisheries are estimated to account for up to $16 billion annually in gross catch, while estimates of the economic value of carbon storage from the high seas ranges from $74 billion to $220 billion a year. There are regional and sectoral bodies that have a very narrow mandate to look after particular high seas areas, but no body that looks at the ecosystem as a whole. “In these times, with a changing climate, looking at ecosystem resilience is especially important,” Karan said.The resolution adopted on December 24 had been anticipated since the final meeting this past June of a UN Preparatory Committee, which issued an official recommendation that the General Assembly launch an intergovernmental conference to negotiate a high seas treaty.“After more than 10 years of discussion, it is encouraging that United Nations member states unanimously agreed to move forward in 2018 with negotiations for an international agreement that would fill the gaps in ocean management to ensure protection for marine life on the high seas,” Karan said in a statement.“The international community, including scientists and members of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), agrees that at least 30 percent of the world’s ocean should be set aside in MPAs and reserves to achieve a sustainable ocean. Protecting biodiversity on the high seas will be a key component of moving toward this goal.”The resolution lays out the negotiation process as consisting of four meetings, starting in 2018 and going through mid-2020. The first intergovernmental talks will take place in September 2018, and the final treaty text is expected by the end of 2020.At the conclusion of its meetings, the UN Preparatory Committee issued a report that made several recommendations of items to be included in an international high seas agreement, but there are still some crucial issues that must be hammered out via treaty negotiations.“Key questions that the countries will be discussing over the next two years through this intergovernmental conference will be what are the protections that can be taken at an international level, who are the decision-makers, how will that management be conducted and implemented, and then what kind of mechanisms for monitoring, review, and enforcement will follow through to make sure that those protections are not just designated but actually result in conservation benefits and change on the water,” Karan told Mongabay.Many other conservationists were quick to applaud the UN’s adoption of a resolution to move forward with high seas treaty negotiations, as well.“This is great news. This vote could open the way to create a Paris Agreement for the ocean,” Maria Damanaki, a former European Union Commissioner for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries who now works for The Nature Conservancy, told The Guardian on the eve of the adoption of the resolution to move forward with treaty negotiations. “This could be the most important step I have seen in my 30 years working on oceans.”Two fishing vessels at sunset. Photo via Max Pixel, licensed under Creative Commons Zero – CC0.Follow Mike Gaworecki on Twitter: @mikeg2001FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page. Article published by Mike Gaworecki Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? 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In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? 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It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredcenter_img Climate Change, Climate Change And Conservation, Environment, Fisheries, Fishing, Marine Biodiversity, Marine Conservation, Marine Protected Areas, Oceans, Oceans And Climate Change, Protected Areas, United Nations last_img read more