At ocean treaty talks, Jane Fonda urges ‘negotiate with love’

February 22, 2023 - 5:19 PM
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Actor Jane Fonda attends a news conference on a binding ocean global treaty at United Nations headquarters in New York City, U.S., February 21, 2023. (Reuters/Shannon Stapleton)

 Actress and activist Jane Fonda appealed to countries gathered at the United Nations in New York this week to “negotiate with love” as they try to hammer out a new legally binding ocean protection treaty.

“The ocean is our ally. Let us love it and respect it,” Fonda told reporters at the United Nations.

“Negotiate with love and not just thinking about jobs or thinking about national interests … (negotiate) with love and empathy in their hearts for the creatures that we’re trying to save and for the one ocean that we’re trying to save,” she said.

Green groups believe a legally binding ocean protection treaty will decide whether efforts to safeguard global biodiversity can succeed.

Talks were suspended in August with countries unable to reach a deal on financing. Sharing proceeds of “marine genetic resources” and the creation of ocean environmental impact assessment rules for development were also sticking points.

Experts familiar with the negotiations said major parties have now moved closer together on key issues as new talks begin, though compromises were still being sought.

“Even dogs don’t poop in their kennel because they know that the kennel provides security and a home for them. We’re pooping in our kennel,” Fonda said. “We are not behaving right and why the treaty is important is it will force us to behave right.”

—Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Sandra Maler