Announced to a standing ovation after extensive talks at the UN a historic treaty to protect the worlds oceans has been agreed. It will formally be signed at a later date and then become legally binding for all states
Precisely the treaty will establish a legal framework for establishing vast marine protected areas (MPAs). This means that all activities that go on in the high seas will be subject to environmental impact assessments, with member states held accountable for their actions. The treaty has already been hailed as a massive achievement, both for the consensus reached and its equitable approach to safeguarding the worlds maritime domain.
The innovative treaty will establish large-scale marine protected areas on the high seas, which are also necessary to meet the goals committed to by the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Agreement which agreed last December to find a way to protect at least 30% of the ocean by 2030. For the first time, the treaty will also assess the impact of economic activities on high seas biodiversity and there will be legal consequences for those who violate the treaty. Furthermore developing countries will be supported for their participation and implementation of the new treaty by a strong capacity-building and marine technology transfer component, funded by a variety of mechanisms both public and private as well as through an equitable mechanism for sharing the potential benefits of marine resources.
You can read the statement by the European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginijus Sinkevičius here.