High Seas Alliance members attending the UN Borders Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) meeting welcomed a statement by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today, calling on countries to urgently address the many stresses facing the marine life found in international waters.
High Seas Alliance Coordinator Peggy Kalas said:
“The high seas is the last great global commons which we allow to be exploited without conservation management or governance and for the benefit of the few. Key to the health of the whole ocean and our planet, we need countries to listen to Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and bring protection to the high seas through an international instrument under the Law of the Sea.”
Commenting Sofia Tsenikli, Greenpeace Senior Oceans Policy Advisor attending the UN BBNJ meeting said:
“The Secretary General is right: Our oceans are in peril and in need of urgent protection. Faced with multiple threats including climate change, ocean acidification and overfishing the oceans can only provide livelihoods in the future if governments establish a global network of ocean sanctuaries today. It´s simply scandalous that still less than 1% of the high seas is protected. Governments must listen to the call by the UN Secretary General and act urgently to protect marine life in the oceans by setting up a UN high seas biodiversity agreement.”
You can read UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon’s statement here.
From 1 to 4 April, the BBNJ a working group consisting of representatives from UN Member States, intergovernmental organizations, the scientific community and civil society are discussing ways to protect marine resources from a number of pressures that cumulatively put oceans at risk.