Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Global Ocean Commission Aims High

The high seas will be the focus of a new independent Global Ocean Commission that was formed with the hopes of influencing United Nations efforts to preserve the high seas.

High seas are the international waters outside of national jurisdictions. The Global Ocean Commission says the United Nation's 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea is missing the boat when it comes to issues such as overfishing, biodiversity, habitat loss, climate change, compliance and monitoring. "The high seas are owned by everyone but their governance and management are inadequate," José María Figueres, a founding member of the new commission, told reporters in a teleconference.

The Commission will be based at Somerville College at the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom and will work with scientists from the International Programme on the State of the Ocean. It is funded by the U.S. Pew Charitable Trusts, the Adessium Foundation in the Netherlands, and U.S. philanthropic group Oceans 5.

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