UNITAR/ DOALOS/OLA Seminar on Recent Developments in the Use of Oceans and Seas

With more than 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface covered by oceans, and more than 40 per cent of the world’s population (more than 2.8 billion people) living within 100 kilometres of the coast, oceans produce half of the oxygen in the Earth’s atmosphere and sustain a food web for an life system that even supports human consumption. The Secretary General, in his report on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (A/66/70/Add.2), which referred to the Convention on the Law of the Sea and its implementing agreements, recommended inter alia for greater international effort and cooperation to protect important marine habitats and ecosystem functions. The report also recommended that the international community continued to demonstrate its resolve and commitment to improve the plight of the oceans. Following this report, the General Assembly then adopted without vote the draft resolution (A/66/L.22).

Event date: Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Event Venue: Conference Building Room 9

Time: 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

 

With more than 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface covered by oceans, and more than 40 per cent of the world’s population (more than 2.8 billion people) living within 100 kilometres of the coast, oceans produce half of the oxygen in the Earth’s atmosphere and sustain a food web for an life system that even supports human consumption.  The Secretary General, in his report on Oceans and the Law of the Sea (A/66/70/Add.2), which referred to the Convention on the Law of the Sea and its implementing agreements, recommended inter alia for greater international effort and cooperation to protect important marine habitats and ecosystem functions.  The report also recommended that the international community continued to demonstrate its resolve and commitment to improve the plight of the oceans.  Following this report, the General Assembly then adopted without vote the draft resolution (A/66/L.22).

Further to the Secretary-General’s report and the GA resolution, the Future We Want, stressed the importance of the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans and seas and of their resources for sustainable development.  This report calls for sustainable use of oceans and resources, that takes into consideration the contributions to poverty eradication, sustained economic growth, food security and creation of sustainable livelihoods and decent work, while at the same time protecting biodiversity and the marine environment and addressing the impacts of climate change.

 

In view of the critical need to understand the crucial link of oceans and seas to our sustainability, the United Nations Institute on Training and Research (UNITAR)  New York Office and the Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, Office of Legal Affairs, will jointly organize a seminar on selected recent developments in ocean affairs and the law of the sea.  This seminar will provide information on selected recent developments in the field of oceans and the law of the sea to delegates, in particular new delegates, participating in informal consultations on the draft General Assembly resolutions on oceans and the law of the sea and sustainable fisheries. Particular focus will be placed on the outcomes of the meetings of bodies established by the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, as well as subsidiary bodies of the General Assembly dealing with law of the sea.  The programme of the briefing will also include a discussion panel to consider oceans in the context of forthcoming processes established pursuant to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development held in Rio in 2012 (Rio + 20)."

 

This seminar aims to widen the understanding on the benefits and necessity of conservation and sustainable use of oceans and seas and their resources, as well as the provisions of the Convention on the Law of the Sea and the outcomes of major summits on sustainable development.  This seminar will provide resources to enhance delegates’ knowledge on the legal frameworks dealing with oceans and seas, adding value to their preparation for the General Assembly agenda items on oceans and seas as well as the 2015 Sustainable Development Agenda.


 


This seminar will benefit delegates, whether new or those following second committee or sixth committees, who would like to learn about new developments in oceans and law of the sea conservation and use for sustainable development, especially in terms of their contributions to poverty eradication, sustained economic growth, food security and creation sustainable livelihood and decent work. 

Therefore, the seminar aims inter alia to:

• Provide an overview the Convention on the Law of the Sea and other implementing Agreement
• Examine the importance of conservation and sustainable us of oceans and seas, and highlight report and resolutions on the topic
• Consider the cross over topics of conservation, sustainability and climate change, especially in terms of oceans and seas


 

The program will encourage a participatory approach and include expert presentations and seminar style discussions. Participants will receive a comprehensive set of reference and background material, including selected articles and other reference documents, copies of PowerPoint presentations, and other relevant materials. Resource persons will comprise policy experts, senior UN officials, and experienced practitioners.
 
 

This seminar is open to delegates of Permanent Missions to the United Nations and to other representatives of international, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations.  Persons interested in participating are invited to apply online for the seminar at www.unitar.org/event/new-york

For queries regarding the seminar, please contact nyo@unitar.org.

The deadline for registration is 10 September 2013.