“The ocean holds a value to humankind that goes far beyond the monetary. It makes our planet habitable and there isn’t a price tag large enough to reflect that. Our collective commitment to preserving its value should be just as limitless.”
Starting today, States have an extraordinary opportunity to change the trajectory of ocean decline and loss, and protect the biodivesity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ).
On 19 June 2015, General Assembly Resolution 69/292 committed Member States to “develop an international legally-binding instrument under the Convention on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction.”
A Preparatory Committee (PrepCom) has the task to make “substantive recommendations to the General Assembly on the elements of a draft text of an international legally-binding instrument,” by the end of 2017. The resulting draft will then be negotiated at an Intergovernmental Conference, the timing of which be decided by the UNGA before September 2018.
This is a hugely exciting, positive, and long-awaited development! A robust and far reaching Treaty to protect the marine biodiversity in ABNJ will change the way the world engages with its largest ecosystem and biosphere.
You can follow the development of the discussions, State´s submissions and other relevant information in this link: http://www.un.org/Depts/los/biodiversity/prepcom.htm