Last March 4, 2023, Rena Lee, President of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Conference on an Agreement on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (the BBNJ Agreement), announced with emotion and symbolic words the happy outcome of the process: “the ship has reached the shore”. After 20 years of work, including 6 years of formal negotiations and 36 uninterrupted hours of final consultations behind closed doors, all outstanding issues had been overcome and the President was able to present a text reflecting the end of the negotiation. The process was successfully completed, pending final editorial refining of the text, translation into the six official languages of the United Nations, and formal adoption of the Agreement, which is scheduled for June 2023.
List of 2023 Articles
Inter Folia Fulget: The UN General Assembly Resolution 76/300 of 28 July 2022 on “The Human Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment”
On 28 July 2022, the UN General Assembly (UNGA) adopted the landmark Resolution 76/300 “: “The Human Right to a Clean, Healthy and Sustainable Environment”. Resolution 76/300 was adopted with overwhelming support: 161 votes in favour, zero against, and 8 abstentions (Belarus, Cambodia, China, Ethiopia, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, and Syria).
The process of “carving out” the international recognition of the right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment as a human right at the interacting international and national orders was naturally long and imperceptibly, but steadily, embedded in international negotiating process.
Since the beginning of the space age, the outer space has been extensively used for communications, navigation, earth observation and climate monitoring. Communication satellites power telephony and the internet. Navigation satellites have provided us with the GPS, and other such systems, that make traversing the earth much easier. Reconnaissance or surveillance satellites observe the earth to detect changes alerting us about environmental deterioration, illegal activities or polluting emissions. Satellites, as evidenced by the war in Ukraine, can even warn us about the movements of enemy nations by detecting, for example, the accumulation of armies and weapons right on our borders ready for invasion. Satellites in the service of the World Meteorological Association have led to much more precise estimates about the anticipated magnitude of climate change. Satellites and the rockets that propel them to space have made possible the beginning of conquest of space, the much-touted final frontier of humanity.
The Caspian Sea has been shared for centuries between Russia/USSR and Persia/Iran. Before the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the international legal status of the Caspian Sea was governed by the International Treaties of 1921 and 1940, in which no specific definition was given to the Caspian Sea and its sui generis status was not named, but it was de facto condominium. These Treaties were accepted and recognized by the international community. Since 1991, the three newly formed littoral states, former Republics of the USSR – Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, have expressed a need to establish the new legal regime of the Caspian Sea.
Green hydrogen perspective and energy transition: Advancing sustainable energy governance in the Mediterranean region
The European Union (EU) has set an ambitious goal to become the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, and is relying on the European Green Deal (EGD) to achieve it, along with the Renewable Gases and Hydrogen Directive. The 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine has accelerated the EU's strategy for energy resilience and replacing fossil energy carriers. Within the 2019 EGD vision and framework, renewable, low-carbon, and net-zero gases will have a prominent role to play in decarbonizing the EU economy. Hydrogen as a clean, reliable and potentially sustainable energy vector is a rising enabler for a multisectoral transition towards a low-carbon economy based on renewable energy sources.