Enforcing Marine Protection
The members of the IUCN declared 30 by 30 as their official target goal. The aim is to designate 30 per cent of the Ocean as Marine Protected Areas by 2030.
By December 2020, States had not even realized the 10 per cent by 2020 goal, as agreed upon by 193 States at the COP of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Japan in 2010.
Currently, about 8.1 per cent of the oceans and only 2.4 per cent of the High Seas are protected.
The excuse? There would be no legally binding obligation of States to protect the Ocean.
Legally Binding Obligations
Legally binding obligations to protect the marine environment do exist in the Law of the Sea.
States are obliged to protect and preserve the marine environment. This obligation is legally binding, binds the whole State community and provides for specific legal obligations of States and relevant organisations, such as the International Seabed Authority (ISA), to protect the Ocean.
We are dedicated to legally enforcing this obligation and holding actors liable.
The beginning of Climate Litigation was like a fresh wind that uplifted individuals, organisations and small island States worldwide to stand up for their rights. It provided a tool to enforce their interests: Suddenly individuals also had a seat at the table that had previously been reserved for politicians.
Like the wind of Climate Litigation, our aim is to create a global wave of Ocean Litigation, encouraging individuals, organisations and States globally to take legal action to enforce the protection of the marine environment.
This wave will is one step towards the Paradigm Shift of how people interact with the Ocean.
Laws are invented to regulate human behaviour, based on the needs and values of the society. Laws thus reflect the needs and values of the society.
The 21st century is referred to as the anthropocene area - an area in which the influence of humans on the global biosphere and geosphere unprecedentedly grew to such an extent that it alters the Earth’s surface and geological compositions. An era, in which humanity has become the dominant force of global environmental change.
Reorienting environmental ethics away from this worldview and catalyzing a transformation in how humanity relates to, values, and uses Nature as a humble part of the ecosystem, requires a shift in the underlying legal framework that recognises the intrinsic value of Nature itself and prosecutes its destruction: Rights of Nature and Ecocide.