High Seas Biodiversity Agreement

In the absence of a legally binding mechanism under international law, countries will not be required to cooperate in the development and implementation of conservation measures on the high seas. In addition, monitoring of the impact of various economic activities, such as fishing and mining, on biodiversity is fragmented and insufficient. Marine animals, or even entire ecosystems, could be lost before we have a chance to identify and understand them. Negotiations are under way at the United Nations in New York for an agreement on the conservation of the high seas. This agreement must be ambitious to protect our oceans from profiteers. English translation of an online article BY Sebastian Unger. States are currently discussing the development of a new legally binding instrument for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. This study focuses on the role of fisheries in the agreement. Much of the ocean is located beyond the AEZ: 64 percent by area and 95 percent by volume. These regions are often referred to as the high seas. The high seas are important for international trade, fishing fleets, submarine telecommunications cables and are of commercial interest to mining companies.

The high seas are also home to a wide variety of ecosystems and species. Many of them are too little or not covered. The consciousness of the ocean and the increasing pressure on it have reached a critical mass. This has promoted many national and regional initiatives aimed at preserving and sustainably managing the coastal ocean. However, due to the transboundary nature of the oceans, the measures taken by some States are not sufficient to preserve the high seas. At the same time, legal gaps in the existing international governance framework mean that it is not able to adequately address the growing threats to biodiversity on the high seas. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) establishes rules for the exploitation of the ocean and its resources, but does not define how states must preserve and sustainably exploit the biodiversity of the high seas. The definition of a coastal base allows States to define maritime zones and identify their waters of jurisdiction. Their exclusive economic zone (EEZ) extends 200 nautical miles from the baseline. States have the exclusive right to exploit or preserve the resources found in this area.

Parts of the ocean outside the exclusive economic zone are known as areas outside national jurisdiction (ABNJ). The law of the sea continues to subdivide these areas into the water column known as the high seas and the seabed, referred to as zones. .