The Convention sets the boundaries of different zones, measured from a carefully defined baseline. (Usually, a baseline of the sea follows the low-water line, but if the coast is deeply indented, has fringed islands, or is very unstable, straight baselines can be used.) The zones are as follows: on many issues, the 1982 Convention contains precise and detailed rules (e.g. B on peaceful passage through territorial waters and the definition of the continental shelf), but on other issues (e.B safety of navigation, pollution prevention and fisheries conservation and management), it merely provides a framework that establishes general principles, however, leaves the drafting of rules to other treaties. With regard to the safety of navigation, detailed provisions on the safety and seaworthiness of ships, collision prevention and crew qualification are contained in several treaties adopted under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN). IMO has also adopted strict emission standards for ships. Pollution of the sea from other sources is regulated by several regional treaties, most of which were adopted under the auspices of the United Nations Environment Programme. The general standards set out in the 1982 Convention for the Conservation of Fisheries and the Management of the EEZ (where most of the fishery takes place) have been supplemented by non-binding guidelines contained in the Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries adopted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in 1995. The management principles for deep-sea fishers are set out in the United Nations Fish Stocks Treaty (1995), which manages straddling fish stocks and highly migratory fish stocks, as well as in detailed measures adopted by several regional fisheries commissions. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), also known as the Convention on the Law of the Sea, is an international agreement that emerged from the Third United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS III), held between 1973 and 1982. The Convention on the Law of the Sea defines the rights and obligations of nations with regard to their use of the world`s oceans and establishes guidelines for business, the environment and the management of natural marine resources. The 1982 Convention replaced the 1958 Quadripartite Convention on the High Seas. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea entered into force in 1994, a year after Guyana became the 60th country to ratify the treaty.
 As of June 2016[updated], 167 countries and the European Union had acceded to the Convention. It is not clear to what extent the Convention codifies customary international law. IMO adopted this international treaty in 2004, in which ships flying the flag of signatories by flag States must comply with the management and control of their ballast water in order to prevent the spread of harmful organisms. This convention entered into force on 8 September 2016 and all ships must have approved ballast water treatment systems by 2024. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea makes a clear distinction between the different areas of the sea. The old distinction between coastal areas, where countries could claim their sovereignty, and the high seas, where the general rule was that of freedom, still exists, but eventually an agreement was reached on the exact definition of these areas. The geographical boundary of these areas is determined in terms of distance from the coast. Each country is free to draw its own baseline in a reasonable way to define its coastline. This baseline is either the line that reaches the sea during the lowest tides, when the coast is fairly regular, or geometric straight lines that connect the capes when the coast is very rugged. From the coast to the high seas, the main areas are the internal waters, territorial waters, continental shelf and high seas.
The main regulatory framework for submarine cable telecommunications is the Convention on the Law of the Sea. In its preamble, the Convention emphasizes one of its objectives, “to facilitate international communication”. This is repeated in many articles in which special provisions are made for submarine cables and pipelines.  One of the most important works of the Organization is the Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea, the first version of which took place in 1914, shortly after its creation in 1960, and again in 1974. It is often considered the most important of all international treaties on the safety of merchant ships. More recently, IMO has promulgated a port State control authority that allows local maritime authorities to inspect foreign ships and has published the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code to improve the protection of ports and ships from piracy and terrorism. Fishing on the high seas is governed by the 1958 Convention on Fishing and Conservation of living resources of the high seas. The purpose of this Convention is to solve problems arising from the conservation of the living resources of the high seas and, in particular, to prevent the overexploitation of those resources. The Convention adopts certain provisions of this Convention in articles 116 to 120. All States have the right to fish on the high seas provided that they comply with the provisions of the Convention and, in particular, they take national measures and cooperate with other States to contribute to the conservation of the living resources of the high seas and to establish regional fisheries management organizations for that purpose. In order to determine allowable catches, States must take measures to maintain or restore populations of fished species, taking into account the interdependence of stocks. They must also conduct research and measurements to estimate available fish stocks and share the results with other countries.
Notable in the development of the law of the sea are a number of international conventions signed in the second half of the 20th century. The United Nations (UN) held its first Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS I) in 1956, which resulted in a Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1958. The final conference, held in Montego Bay, Jamaica, in 1982, resulted in the Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOSC) in 1982. The LOSC entered into force in 1994 after receiving the required number of signatories from the United Nations. The third conference is organized by the United Nations when Third World countries challenge some of the rules adopted in Geneva. 160 countries are participating in the process. It lasted from 1973 to 1982 and led to the signing of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) in Montego Bay. The Convention defines more precisely some of the concepts used in traditional law, such as the territorial sea, the exclusive economic zone, the continental shelf and adds new ones, such as the waters of the archipelago, the navigable straits, the seabed. The Convention introduced a number of provisions.
The main topics covered were boundary definition, navigation, archipelago status and transit regimes, exclusive economic zones (EEZs), continental shelf liability, deep-sea mining, exploitation regime, protection of the marine environment, scientific research and dispute settlement. This Convention, with its 320 articles and 9 annexes dealing with many subjects, is one of the most important international agreements in the history of mankind. However, outside territorial waters, the general rule on freedom of use and, in particular, freedom to lay submarine cables and pipelines in accordance with Article 87(1) shall apply. Since there is no rule such as a national responsibility of a State on the high seas, the Convention contains an article devoted to the protection of submarine cables. Each State must enact laws and regulations to prevent ships flying its flag from cutting a cable, whether intentionally or in an accident, or punish them if the rules are broken. The Convention deals with the aspects of overfishing in three articles as follows (the full text of the Convention on the Law of the Sea can be found in www.un.org/Depts/los/convention_agreements/convention_overview_convention.htm): Despite this very important first step, which led to a first codification of legislation for the sea, nations were unable to agree on the boundaries of maritime areas under national sovereignty. .