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States’ obligations to protect the marine environment go beyond Paris Agreement, says international court

A school of fish swim through a field of bleached Staghorn coral in a shallow reef in Thailand
A field of bleached coral, which has been hit by rising sea temperatures. The ITMOS opinion includes a requirement to restore degraded marine habitats and support climate-vulnerable states’ efforts to address marine pollution caused by emissions. (Photo: Sirachai Arunrugstichai/Getty Images)

Advisory opinion says states should monitor, publish reports and conduct environmental impact assessments to tackle marine pollution caused by GHG emissions

Countries have specific obligations to take “all necessary measures” to prevent, reduce and control marine pollution from greenhouse gas emissions, and should seek to harmonise their policies in this area, says an advisory opinion from the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, an independent judicial body.

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