DSCC Position Statement

Date: August 1, 2007

Available in English.

Rapidly advancing technology has opened major new scientific and commercial frontiers in the deep ocean beyond the zones of national jurisdiction. Deep-sea fishing, bio-prospecting, marine scientific research, minerals exploration and energy development are among the extractive activities already underway or on the horizon. At the same time, merchant shipping, military operations and seismic activities are expanding on the high seas, generating unprecedented levels of anthropogenic noise and invasive species introductions. Over all of these looms the spectre of climate change and related impacts, including ocean warming and acidification, loss of polar ice, sea-level rise, slowing of deep-ocean circulation and the possibility of deep-ocean CO2 sequestration. The existing oceans governance regime is woefully inadequate to address the full spectrum of threats to marine biodiversity.