Since its inception, several decisions have influenced the direction of this particular theme and the eventual development of the programme. In 1995, at COP2, it was already requested that a study be completed regarding the bio-prospecting of genetic resources of the deep seabed in consultation with the secretariat of UNCLOS II/10, paragraph 12. Also at COP 2, the Ministerial Statement on the Implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity referred to the new global consensus on the importance of marine and coastal biological diversity as the “Jakarta Mandate on Marine and Coastal Biological Diversity”. The key programme elements include integrated marine and coastal area management, marine and coastal living resources, marine and coastal protected areas, mariculture and alien species and genotypes. Further COP meetings provided additional insights into key issues such as coral bleaching and related biodiversity loss as well as the needs of Small Island Developing States (SIDS).
Elaborated POW adopted at CBD COP 7, February 2004
At COP5, marine and coastal protected areas and mariculture became more significant. This provided the opportunity to expand the programme of work with increased relations including UNESCO and the Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans, which also included discussion of joint work programmes. High seas biodiversity was later added at COP7 and has become a significant issue in current discussions, particularly with reference to recognising threats, impacts, and the need for spatial protection and sustainable management using a step-wise process. As progress has been made on the programme over time, enabling activities have been added to help overcome obstacles with its implementation. In addition, relevant activities from the Plan of Implementation of the World Summit on Sustainable Development have been incorporated into the programme of work. By the 9th COP, the impacts of climate change, including ocean acidification and fertilization, became clearly embedded in the agenda.
To learn more, visit the COP decision webpage