New Zealand needs to lift its game in UN Ocean Treaty negotiations - Greenpeace
Tuesday, 18 September - The first meeting at the United Nations’ headquarters focused on a treaty to protect all the oceans beyond national borders has just come to an end.
Greenpeace says the New Zealand position showed a disappointing lack of ambition. Whereas the negotiations were underway because of a widespread belief that the status quo was unacceptable, New Zealand sought to reinforce current regional arrangements rather than implement a global system of marine protected areas in the high seas and deep seabed area.
Speaking from the UN as the first round of negotiations towards a historic UN Ocean Treaty draws to a close, Greenpeace NZ spokesperson Duncan Currie, said:
"The global high seas Treaty to protect the high seas that’s being developed is a historic opportunity to safeguard the future of our oceans for generations to come.
"New Zealand should take a bold and proactive stance to protect the high seas and deep seabed, by advocating a strong global system to put into place protected areas and to guard the ocean against future threats to marine biodiversity."
"Oceans beyond national borders cover almost half of our planet. We all have a responsibility to protect them and for the first time in history, this shared responsibility could be enshrined in law with a global high seas Ocean Treaty.
"To safeguard marine life, tackle climate change and ensure food security for billions of people, we need to protect at least 30% of our oceans by 2030. To achieve that, we need to see a Treaty which has real teeth and allows us to create a network of ocean sanctuaries around the world. The future of our oceans depends on this treaty.