Human activities in the Southern Ocean are managed through the international consensus-based Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources. In recent years, rapid environmental changes likely associated with the impact of global anthropogenic climate change have been reported in parts of the Antarctic region, and research suggests ongoing and increasing changes can be expected. The observed and projected changes reflected in Antarctic climate change research are likely to affect the efforts of the Convention’s Commission to deliver the objective of the Convention – the conservation of Antarctic marine living resources – and will also influence the role of the Southern Ocean in delivering ecosystems services, including globally significant contributions to carbon capture and biodiversity. An analysis of the annual reports of the meetings of the Commission and its Scientific Committee finds that the Commission’s considerations of climate change thus far are inadequate. The paper concludes that without prompt action to address the issue, the effects of climate change in the Convention area are highly likely to significantly impact the effective implementation of the Convention’s objective. The possible implications of CCAMLR’s failure to act going forward are explored, and some suggested management response actions are provided.