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Submarine Cables and the Oceans: Connecting the World

Submarine Cables and the Oceans: Connecting the WorldThere are many things and services in our everyday life that we take for granted, and telecommunications is one of them. We surf the internet, send emails to friends and colleagues abroad, talk to family members in foreign countries over the phone, book airline seats and make banking transactions without actually realizing and appreciating the sophisticated technology that enables us to do so. This report covers the history and nature of cables, their special status in international law, their interaction with the environment and other ocean users and, finally, the challenges of the future. It is an evidence-based synopsis that aims to improve the quality and availability of information to enhance understanding and cooperation between all stakeholders. UNEP-WCMC in collaboration with the International Cable Protection Committee and UNEP has prepared this new report to provide an objective, factual description of the sub-marine cable industry and the interaction of submarine telecommunications (which route 95% of all international communications traffic) with the marine environment. This important report seeks to focus and guide deliberations and decision making on the wise conservation and protection of the oceans in concert with their sustainable management and use.