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IUCN Marine Biodiversity Matrix

This website has been set up by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), building on work by an international group of legal experts. Our purpose is to support the development of an international legally binding instrument on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.


On each page of the site, find an evolving set of recommendations for each element of a potential agreement. To view the contents, please follow the links in the side bar contents or from the outline below to access suggestions for each section of the draft instrument.


We welcome contributions. The content of this website is intended to evolve. Visit this page for more information about how to contribute: How to join the discussion. Please contribute your suggestions and join the discussion!


Below, find an outline of this site's content:

I. Preambular elements

II. General elements
1. Use of terms
2. Scope of application
3. Objectives
4. Relationship to the Convention and other instruments and frameworks and relevant global, regional and sectoral bodies

III. Conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction
1. General principles and approaches
2. International cooperation
3. Marine genetic resources, including questions on the sharing of benefits
4. Measures such as area-based management tools, including marine protected areas
5. Environmental impact assessments
6. Capacity building and transfer of marine technology

IV. Institutional arrangements
1. Decision-making body/forum
2. Scientific/technical body
3. Secretariat

V. Clearing-house mechanism
VI. Financial resources and issues
VII. Compliance
VIII. Settlement of disputes
IX. Responsibility and liability
XI. Review
XII. Final clauses