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High Seas

BLUE’s mission is to see 30 per cent of the world’s ocean under protection by 2030 and the high seas, which make up over 63 per cent of the ocean, are vital to achieving this goal. 

Download High Seas Report

The high seas, those parts of the ocean beyond national jurisdiction, make up nearly two thirds of the world’s ocean. Yet less than 1% of the high seas is properly protected. A patchwork of 21 separate organisations currently regulates different species, spaces and activities on the high seas, with varying degrees of effectiveness. This regulatory system requires underpinning by a legal instrument specifically designed to protect biodiversity, and independently assess the scientific need for protection. 

The first stage of a two-year United Nations process to secure an international agreement to protect Biodiversity in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ) began in September 2018. It is BLUE’s ambition to raise the political and public profile of the high seas and the importance of these UN talks. 

The UK government was the first G7 country to commit, in September 2018, to protecting 30% of its waters by 2030. BLUE has embarked on a two-year campaign to articulate a vision, raise awareness and ultimately encourage leadership in high seas conservation. As members of the High Seas Alliance we are seeking a global, legally-binding treaty to protect high seas biodiversity. 

BLUE is also undertaking investigative work into the inadequacies and failings of the existing regional fisheries management system.

High Seas

Key stats

43% of earth’s surface

26% of CO2 absorbed

90% of human-created heat absorbed  

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By working together, we can turn the tide on overfishing and the destruction of biodiversity. By supporting BLUE, you can help to create marine reserves around the world.

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