Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction (BBNJ)
The Issue: For the 61% of the ocean that lies in areas beyond national jurisdiction, the development of a new international agreement for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity is now underway (BBNJ agreement): the UN’s Intergovernmental Conference on Marine Biodiversity of Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction. Science, technology and innovation crosscut the negotiations, playing a crucial role in: area-based management tools; environmental impact assessments; capacity building and technology transfer; and sharing benefits from marine genetic resources. Linking deep ocean science with international policy development is critical to overcome challenges in the negotiations and secure a strong basis for this historic agreement.
The Working Group: The BBNJ working group aims to facilitate science-policy engagement in the development of the BBNJ agreement. Currently, the working group has 151 members.
- Synthesise scientific knowledge relating to the conservation and sustainable use of BBNJ and identify key issues for the development of the BBNJ instrument;
- Publish open-access academic papers, policy briefs, and educational materials on key issues for BBNJ and provide input to the BBNJ negotiation process through submissions, side-events, workshops and engagement;
- Provide a focal point for deep-sea scientific expertise and network engagement on BBNJ relevant issues and a platform for collaboration between scientists and other stakeholders.