Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ)

On 4 March 2023 global negotiations concluded on the landmark Treaty of the High Seas to protect the ocean, tackle environmental degradation, fight climate change, and prevent biodiversity loss.

  • This new instrument is being developed within the framework of the UNCLOS, the main international agreement governing human activities at sea.

Key Developments

  • The new treaty will allow to establish large-scale marine protected areas on the high seas, which are also necessary to meet the global commitment of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Agreement concluded last December to protect at least 30% of the ocean by 2030.
  • For the first time, the treaty will also require assessing the impact of economic activities on high seas biodiversity.
  • The high ambition coalition on Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) was launched at the One Ocean Summit in Brest, on 11 of February 2022.