Lack of adequate governance of the high seas areas has resulted in the continued degradation of ocean and marine habitats. Ȁ e ecosystem approach, which comprises integrated, precautionary management policies, can be an important tool to reverse this situation. CCAMLR was a pioneer in the incorporation of an ecosystem approach to the conservation and management of marine living resources, and continues to be a leader in its implementation. Ȁ rough its actions at scientiﬁc, institutional and compliance levels, it has attempted to balance conservation objectives with the maintenance of commercial ﬁsheries. CCAMLR has many achievements in this regard, but needs to face new challenges posed by the expansion of ﬁsheries, including illegal, unre-ported and unregulated (IUU) ﬁshing, if it is not to abandon the core conservation principles embodied in the Antarctic Treaty. Other regional ﬁshery bodies that have committed themselves to incorporating the ecosystem approach in their regimes can learn important lessons from CCAMLR’s successes and also from its diﬃculties. Incorporating the ecosystem approach is an ambitious goal, but one that can contribute signiﬁcantly to ocean governance.