BBNJ Informal Dialogues

The ocean is the ultimate destination for outcomes from human activity on land. The high seas, part of the global commons covering almost half of our planet, provide critical ecosystem services, from fisheries to climate regulation. However only 1.2% of the high seas have been protected, putting biodiversity and the security of our planet at risk.

As of March 2022, an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ) has been agreed.

The need for sustained international cooperation for ratification and implementation the agreement is critical. This is the first global treaty process related to the ocean in over twenty years and the only one targeted specifically at the protection of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

The BBNJ Informal Dialogues is a Track 1.5 platform that brings together government representatives, experts and other stakeholders to make concrete progress toward the ratification and implementation of the High Seas Treaty.

A ‘Track 1.5’ dialogue is designed in this context as an informal convening space primarily for Member States, along with select experts from UN agencies, international, regional and sectoral organizations and bodies and civil society. This platform was established in 2020 to support intersessional progress toward the adoption of the treaty.

See details and schedule of the BBNJ Informal Dialogues

68th US Secretary of State John Kerry, with Director of the International Center for Dialogue and Peacebuilding Gina Torry, and His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco at the high-level Informal Intersessional BBNJ “High Seas Treaty” dialogue held in Monaco in March 2020.