Today, Deputy Minister Benedetto Della Vedova took part in the Ministerial Conference called as part of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR). Among others, the Conference, promoted by European Environment Commissioner Sinkevicius, was attended by representatives of the other EU Countries that are part of the Commission (Belgium, France, Germany, Poland, Spain, and Sweden – the Netherlands being absent), and John Kerry, the USA special envoy for climate. The aim of the meeting was to keep up the attention given to the question of Protected Marine Areas, an essential tool for protecting marine resources in Antarctica, by rigorous regulation of the fishing industry, after failure to reach consensus within the CCAMLR for the creation of new protected areas in recent years.
In his input, the Deputy Minister referred to calling of the Conference favourably, as an important step to attempt to overcome the current impasse in setting up new Protected Marine Areas, due to the historical difference of viewpoints between the members of the Commission itself. “In this context,” pointed out DM Della Vedova, “the renewed multilateral commitment on the part of the United States is particularly important, as in the past they have played an important mediating role for the setting up of protected areas”.
The Deputy Minister reiterated Italy’s traditional commitment to safeguarding the Antarctic’s marine resources, especially by means of scientific research, and called on the parties to consider the possibility of calling a special session of the CCAMLR dedicated specifically to the question of Protected Marine Areas, for effective negotiating on this strategic matter.
The Conference achieved an important result with the announcement – on the part of the United States and New Zealand – of their co-sponsoring of the proposals for establishing Protected Marine Areas introduced via the CCAMLR by the EU Commission and Member States (already co-sponsored by the United Kingdom, Australia, Norway, and Uruguay).