Marine protection

Fishing and environmental protection influence one another. The fishing industry is dependent on an intact natural environment but it also impacts on the maritime environment itself. The industry can only have a stable future if fishing is conducted in a sustainable manner, i.e. in harmony with nature and with future generations in mind.

One primary objective of the international community's environmental and development policy is the protection of the oceans, seas and coastal areas: This includes the protection, rational use and development of their living resources. This is stated in Chapter 17 of Agenda 21 - the action plan of the UN Conference on Environment and Development that was published in June 1992 (Rio Conference).

Alongside the politically-oriented AGENDA 21, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) provides the international legal basis for provisions implementing these policy objectives. The Federal Republic of Germany is politically committed to the protection of the oceans and has ratified UNCLOS.

A mackerel swarm
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Overview of topics

Protecting the marine environment

On the basis of international marine protection agreements, the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) is involved in improving the state of the North and Baltic Seas as well as the North Atlantic. This involves following through on national and international commitments.

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Germany's Proposal for a Marine Protected Area

The Federal Government explicitly commits to expanding the marine protected areas in Antarctica and submitted a request for a marine protected area (MPA) in the Wedell Sea to the international Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) in October 2016.

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Whale conservation

The Federal Government of Germany is resolutely opposed to commercial whaling. This also applies to scientific whaling.

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