The last UN Convention on the Law of the Sea was an agreement signed by the international community in 1982. The agreement focused on creating a specific part of international waters where all countries could legally fish, ship and conduct research.
For the last two weeks, 168 members of the community including the EU came together in New York to pass a new agreement. The talks focused on four main areas:
- Establishing marine protected areas
- Improving environmental impact assessments
- Providing finance and capacity building to developing countries
- Sharing of marine genetic resources – biological material from plants and animals in the ocean that can have benefits for society, such as pharmaceuticals, industrial processes and food
This was the fifth attempt to set a new agreement and it has failed.
As per environment campaigners this was a ‘missed opportunity’ and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) issued a statement to the BBC stressing the importance of healthy sea life and how they impact coastal communities, affect biodiversity and the planet in general.