Ocean Governance, standards and ESG #UN Ocean 2022

The first of a year-long Ocean Essentials Conversations

The development of ESG is bringing the need for aligned governance mechanisms between the private and public spheres to the forefront. Climate and biodiversity crises combined with political and humanitarian threats are also highlighting the private sector’s dependence on a stable environmental, social and legal environment.

This conversation focuses on the deployment of activities at sea and the development of international standards that will ensure that such activities are conducted in such a way that they do not disrupt the ecological balance of the marine environment. The role of the UN convention on the law of the sea (UNCLOS) and of competent international organisations in the implementation of the SDG14 will be envisaged in this context.

It will bring together ocean professionals involved in the deployment of activities at sea together with law firms and academia. Together, we will sharpen the understanding of the relevance of the law of the sea to each of these branches of activity and identify a suite of applied outputs and work streams for mutual support, better understanding and guidance towards the protection of the marine environment in compliance with international law.

The UN Ocean Conference 2022 held in Lisbon on 27 June -1 July 2022 provides the ideal opportunity and context to launch a year-long series of Ocean Essentials Conversations that will be held in different places of the world with a strong focus on maritime and offshore activities such as London, Melbourne, Oslo, and Singapore. These will involve law firms, class societies, insurers including the P&I club and industry as well as relevant international organisations and government agencies.

This first conversation brings together different fields of expertise to scope the conversation and objectives to sharpen its relevance and application. In addition to different branches of activities at sea and a mapping of applicable international law, the focus will also be on specific marine environmental issues such as the management of cumulative impacts from different sources of pollution, ecosystem-based management, EIAs, underwater noise, the management of abandoned fishing gear and the protection of vulnerable and threatened species and habitats.