The draft recommendations from the 4th meeting of the UN Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (BBNJ) have indicated the need to explore the existing gaps in the legal framework for the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction, as well as possible ways forward.
As a consequence, from 1-3 December, the IUCN Environmental Law Centre in collaboration with the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) organized an international seminar on conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ) in Bonn, Germany. Bringing together government representatives from 16 states, representatives from intergovernmental organizations, as well as external experts (including the IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme), the objective of this informal meeting was to make substantive progress in the further development of ideas and concepts with regard to three main issues which, amongst others, play a key role in the BBNJ process:
- Possible ways of sharing benefits from the utilization of marine genetic resources accessed in areas beyond national jurisdiction;
- Possible governance frameworks for the establishment and management of a network of Marine Protected Areas on the High Seas; and
- Possible role of and consequences for an UNCLOS implementing agreement.
Following presentations on these topics by a number of attending legal and policy experts, the participants formed working groups to discuss the key issues and consider potential ways forward to facilitate conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction. Furthermore, a BfN script on ABS options prepared by the IUCN Environmental Law Centre was circulated amongst the participants. The workshop report will be published at the beginning of 2012.
Presentation I: Why Do We Need a Global Framework for MPAs in ABNJ?
Presentation II: Designation and Management of OSPAR MPAs
Presentation VI: Broadening the mandate of ISA
Presentation VII: Australia’s Marine Bioregional Planning
Presentation VIII: Summary of Discussions on MPAs in ABNJ
Presentation IX: Summary of Discussions on ABS in ABNJ