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Welcome to the Ambition Tracker!

Here we assess the level of ambition of UN Member States and regional groups within the High Seas Treaty negotiations and the impact their positions are expected to have on the health of the ocean.

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The greatest opportunity to protect the largest reservoir of biodiversity on earth is now, at the UN High Seas Treaty negotiations. A healthy and biodiverse ocean is critical to the future of our planet. The ocean helps regulate the global climate, mediates temperature and acts as the largest carbon storage, providing essential services for reducing climate change risks globally. Millions across the world directly depend on the ocean for their food and livelihood.

From the 15th to the 26th of August, world governments are gathering at the United Nations headquarters in New York to finalize a landmark High Seas Treaty to protect and conserve our blue planet.

The Ambition Tracker assesses the level of ambition of countries and regional groups within the treaty negotiations and the impact their positions are expected to have on the health of the ocean. Our analysis is based on information from the countries’ and regional groups’ formal positions (based on public interventions and proposals with more about our methodology here) that shows that there is still room for improvement in many country/regional positions, for the new treaty to catalyze the transformative change we need to see on the water.

Since discussions at the UN first began on this critical issue twenty years ago, the climate and biodiversity crises have dramatically worsened, with increasing dire consequences for the lives of millions of people worldwide. Here are our recommendations of what countries must do to champion a healthy and productive ocean - the time to act for a strong High Seas treaty for future generations is now!

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Show your support by telling world leaders we need them to champion a strong #HighSeas Treaty now!

World leaders - Turn words to action and champion a healthy ocean now! Secure a #HighSeasTreaty in 2022 that truly protects our blue planet for generations to come. #BBNJ #IGC5 #HighSeas #SaveOurOcean

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Business as Usual

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Based on our analysis, countries and regional groups in the Business as Usual Zone support very few of the ambitious positions within the High Seas Treaty negotiations.

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Their position as a whole will result in little or no change to the current status quo, that has not delivered adequate protections for marine life from industrial activities such as fishing, oil and gas exploration, and deep-sea mining, all of which are expanding. The positions of this zone are highly unlikely to deliver the tools or outcomes needed to effectively protect and conserve ecosystems and biodiversity, resulting in the continued decline of species and habitats, limited positive outcomes for people and whose livelihoods depend on the ocean and considerably lowered ocean resilience, exacerbating the growing impacts of the climate crisis globally.

The Business as Usual Zone represents an ocean at risk of continued decline due to lack of comprehensive high seas protections.

Disclaimer: The HSA “Ambition Tracker” is based on the most recent information available to High Seas Alliance members with regard to countries’/regional groups’ positions during IGC3 and IGC4 (negotiations on the development of a new instrument on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction). Countries and regional groups may have updated their positions since this analysis was conducted, and we encourage countries and regional groups to communicate any additional or updated information to ambitiontracker@highseasalliance.org, so that the Ambition Tracker can be updated to reflect such changes.

Please note that while HSA recognises that the “package” of elements under negotiations are intrinsically linked and critical to successful completion of the negotiations, the HSA “Ambition Tracker” focuses on a core selection of conservation provisions and does not cover the full scope of issues currently under negotiation.

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Canada flag

Canada

China flag

China

Japan flag

Japan

Russia flag

Russia

Lower Ambition

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Based on our analysis, countries and regional groups in the Lower Ambition Zone support some ambitious positions within the High Seas Treaty negotiations, but their positions will not result in the positive, transformative change needed to secure a healthy and biodiverse ocean in our future.

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Their current positions, do not go far enough to challenge the status quo and are not sufficient to effectively protect marine ecosystems, biodiversity and habitats, declines in ecosystem functioning and reduced ocean resilience, resulting in a weakening of the ocean’s resilience and marine life’s ability to adapt to the impacts of climate change.

The Lower Ambition Zone represents an impaired ocean with little life and biodiversity.

*Countries/Regional bodies in the left-hand column supported fewer than half of the ambitious positions and are extremely close to moving into the “Business as Usual Zone”.

Disclaimer: The HSA “Ambition Tracker” is based on the most recent information available to High Seas Alliance members with regard to countries’/regional groups’ positions during IGC3 and IGC4 (negotiations on the development of a new instrument on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction). Countries and regional groups may have updated their positions since this analysis was conducted, and we encourage countries and regional groups to communicate any additional or updated information to ambitiontracker@highseasalliance.org, so that the Ambition Tracker can be updated to reflect such changes.

Please note that while HSA recognises that the “package” of elements under negotiations are intrinsically linked and critical to successful completion of the negotiations, the HSA “Ambition Tracker” focuses on a core selection of conservation provisions and does not cover the full scope of issues currently under negotiation.

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Australia flag

Australia

Norway flag

Norway

USA flag

USA

Latin American Group (CLAM) flag

Latin American Group (CLAM) (14 countries)

Indonesia flag

Indonesia

New Zealand flag

New Zealand

Philippines flag

Philippines

Switzerland flag

Switzerland

UK flag

UK

African Group flag

African Group (54 countries)

EU flag

EU (27 countries)

High Ambition

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Based on our analysis, countries and regional groups included in the High Ambition Zone support the most ambitious positions within the treaty negotiations...

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that are necessary to help ensure effective global actions to restore, recover and protect ocean ecosystems and species, help build ocean resilience to climate change and better mitigate its effects, improve ecosystem functioning and support peoples’ livelihoods -- creating the transformational change needed to save the ocean and our planet for future generations.

The High Ambition Zone represents an ocean that is full of life and is able to support humans and all species that depend on it for their survival and livelihoods.

Disclaimer: The HSA “Ambition Tracker” is based on the most recent information available to High Seas Alliance members with regard to countries’/regional groups’ positions during IGC3 and IGC4 (negotiations on the development of a new instrument on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction). Countries and regional groups may have updated their positions since this analysis was conducted, and we encourage countries and regional groups to communicate any additional or updated information to ambitiontracker@highseasalliance.org, so that the Ambition Tracker can be updated to reflect such changes.

Please note that while HSA recognises that the “package” of elements under negotiations are intrinsically linked and critical to successful completion of the negotiations, the HSA “Ambition Tracker” focuses on a core selection of conservation provisions and does not cover the full scope of issues currently under negotiation.

Tweet now
Monaco flag

Monaco

CARICOM flag

CARICOM (15 countries)

PSIDS flag

PSIDS (13 countries)