The Use of IMO Instruments for Marine Conservation on the High Seas

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date



Maritime Regulation, Maritime Law, Commercial Shipping, MARPOL, PSSAs


Chapter 5 explores the use of IMO regulatory and management tools to protect sensitive marine areas and species, including special areas designated under the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, 1973/78 (MARPOL), particularly sensitive sea areas (PSSAs) and routeing and reporting. It discusses how these instruments have been applied and their potential for use in high seas areas to address conservation needs. The conclusion is there is sufficient legal and institutional basis for MARPOL special areas, PSSAs, routeing measures and reporting measures to protect ecosystems and species in high seas areas, but likely with some adjustments.