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April 14, 2023 2 min read

The Treaty Helping Our Oceans

Did you know that the ocean absorbs 90% of the heat that greenhouse gas emissions trap? Talk about putting our planet in hot water!

The ocean’s health is vital for our presence on earth, yet somehow, 99% of it has been ungoverned! That is, until now, of course! 

As of March 7th, 2023, UN delegates have reached a historic agreement surrounding the protection of marine biodiversity in international waters. It’s called the High Seas Treaty and we’re pretty stoked about the ocean-protection measures it outlines. 

Let’s take a deeper look.

What is the High Seas Treaty?

In a nutshell, this treaty has been developed to ensure the protection and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in international waters. This means for the first time in history, there will be rules in place to govern and manage what goes on in the great ocean blue. 

This strict protection for the sustainable use of ocean resources emphasises a precautionary approach. This method makes for a more realistic solution in which marine resources are responsibly used so as not to deplete ocean ecosystems to the point of no return. 

Of course, the treaty is responsible for the water outside of national borders. This means governments will need to recognise the need for ocean-based solutions and integrate these actions into their National Adaptation plans in alignment with the Paris Agreement. 

Why is Ocean Protection so Important?

As we mentioned above, the ocean has taken a serious beating in the face of climate change. Not only is the water absorbing the heat, but it’s also holding onto a whopping 25% of all carbon dioxide emissions. 

This has led to a series of problems including acidification, ocean warming, a rise in the sea level, and a devastating impact on coastal life, just to name a few. While our work to lower our impact on the land is vital, it’s important to recognize just how big of a role ocean protection plays in our planet’s future. 

Of course, with this new treaty in place, we have great hopes for the future of the sea and, in turn, the fight against climate change! 

Solutions for the Sea!

As the High Seas Treaty is integrated into climate action plans, we can’t wait to see how governments step up to protect our waters and preserve ocean resources!

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Until next week GFZ's, 

GFZ Team xox

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