Michael Field at Stuff reports:
New Zealand’s diplomatic bid to create the world’s largest marine sanctuary in the Ross Sea is floundering in its Antarctic waters after China and Japan stridently opposed it.
Japan made it clear they don’t even want discussion on the 4.9 million square kilometre marine protected area (MPA) which is backed by US Secretary of State John Kerry.
The Ross Sea or “Last Ocean” plan went before last year’s Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) but failed for lack of a consensus and decision making was moved to a meeting to be held in Bremerhaven, Germany, from July 11 to 16.
That is a pity. Just as Antarctica itself has international agreements to preserve it for scientific research, the Ross Sea should have the same status.
But the nature of international agreements is you can’t force countries to agree.