HOBART, 31 October 2014 – The Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) has again failed to agree to protect key areas in the Ross Sea and East Antarctica at its annual meeting in Hobart due to blocking by China and Russia. The partners of the Antarctic Ocean Alliance (AOA) said that this failure to reach consensus for the fourth time calls into question CCAMLR’s ability to deliver on its conservation commitments.
Two proposals for the protection of the Ross Sea and East Antarctic coastal region were on the table at this week’s meeting, but final consensus from the 24 nations and the EU that make up CCAMLR membership was actively blocked by China and Russia.
“It is appalling that while the majority of CCAMLR Members are more than ready to create significant marine protection in Antarctic waters, China and Russia have again blocked all efforts to negotiate a successful outcome,” said Mark Epstein, Executive Director of the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition (ASOC). “We commend the efforts of the United States, New Zealand, Australia, the European Union and France during the last four years to promote solid Antarctic marine protected proposals in Antarctica, and we hope they continue to demand the urgent protection required for Southern Ocean ecosystems.…Continue reading »