U.N members reach an environmental milestone: protecting our oceans

The United Nations are one step closer to protecting our oceans | BBC/Daniela Daines

Mia DeRouchey | Writer

March 10, 2023

In the midst of the looming Willow Project chaos, the United Nations has approved a treaty that will protect biodiversity on the high seas. 

This is a huge step in the right direction for the oceans that were previously neglected because of the patchy laws surrounding them. Conservation has been limited up until this point because there is little clear responsibility between countries regarding the high seas. Although the ocean covers over 70% of our planet, territories get blurry across the seas. 

An updated framework of the 1994 Law of the Sea will protect marine life in the area known as the High Seas, the oceans outside national boundary waters. The unified agreement treaty applies to almost half of the Earth’s surface and will involve “creating a new body to manage conservation of ocean life”, according to Time Magazine.

Aquatic borders | Wikipedia

Marine animals like dolphins, sea turtles, and whales have annual migration patterns that involve the crossing of many national aquatic borders. This treaty will streamline some of the laws that nations have in place to protect sea animals. 

“I definitely think it’s a good idea, who knows if it will actually be enforced,” said Junior Luke Neuhausen. It’s true that the implementation of this treaty will look different in each country, but the U.N. is definitely taking action to protect our oceans. Hopefully, this will encourage further environmentally loving legislation for the United States. 

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