22 June 2017
In as much as marine environment cooperation has been useful in building communication among concerned states, the bigger South China Sea issues have unfortunately hampered the zonation of the Spratlys as an MPA.
The apprehension towards establishing collaborative marine environment management in the disputed areas may pose a bigger challenge especially if incidents requiring a response, such as the ramming of Indonesia’s Raja Ampat’s coral reefs by a British-owned cruise ship in March this year, take place there.
The absence of regional regulations and response mechanisms for habitats and resources in transboundary waters, therefore, would likely jeopardise national climate adaptation efforts aimed at contributing to the resilience of regional marine environment in the first place.
The issue is becoming even more pressing now that President Donald Trump has pulled the United States out of the Paris Agreement.
It is timely to enhance regional marine environmental protection and re-examine these options more closely.
… Margareth Sembiring is a Senior Analyst at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
NTS Centre / Online / Print
Last updated on 05/07/2017