The High Seas Alliance (HSA) is a partnership of organizations and groups aimed at building a strong common voice and constituency for the conservation of the high seas. The Alliance is currently made up of 27 NGOs plus the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). 

Pretoma is a HSA member and in 2014 is working with the alliance’s other 26 member organizations to address, on an urgent basis, the issue of the conservation and sustainable use of high seas marine biological diversity.  This will be done through the negotiation of a High Seas Biodiversity Agreement under UNCLOS, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

This will apply to the high seas, which is the ocean beyond any country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ) – amounting to 64% of the ocean – and the ocean seabed that lies beyond the continental shelf of any country.  These areas make up nearly 50% of the surface of the Earth and include some of the most environmentally important, critically threatened and least protected ecosystems on the planet. Only an international High Seas Biodiversity Agreement would address the inadequate, highly fragmented and poorly implemented legal and institutional framework that is currently failing to protect the high seas – and therefore the entire global ocean – from the multiple threats they face in the 21st century.

Pretoma’s work on the UNCLOS Implementing Agreement on Marine Biodiversity in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) will target Central American countries in an effort to establish a legal regime to safeguard biodiversity of the high seas.

This page will feature negotiation updates throughout the year.

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