An Environmental Management Strategy for the International Seabed Authority? The Legal Basis

An Environmental Management Strategy for the International Seabed Authority? The Legal Basis The number of contracts granted by the International Seabed Authority (isa) to explore minerals on the seabed beyond national jurisdiction has increased greatly in recent years and commercial exploitation is scheduled to start in the near future. A core challenge is to establish adequate environmental protection measures, procedural safeguards, and institutional arrangements to balance commercial mining with environmental protection. This is especially important given the urgent need to utilize existing legal and institutional frameworks, such as the isa, to protect marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. This article analyses the isa’s mandate to adopt a comprehensive environmental management strategy. It outlines the legal basis of eight potential components of such a strategy. Although several of these have been endorsed by the isa on a temporary or ad hoc basis, substantial gaps remain. An environmental management strategy could provide for systematic environmental safeguards during both exploration and exploitation for minerals. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law Brill

An Environmental Management Strategy for the International Seabed Authority? The Legal Basis

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Publisher
Brill | Nijhoff
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0927-3522
eISSN
1571-8085
D.O.I.
10.1163/15718085-12341340
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The number of contracts granted by the International Seabed Authority (isa) to explore minerals on the seabed beyond national jurisdiction has increased greatly in recent years and commercial exploitation is scheduled to start in the near future. A core challenge is to establish adequate environmental protection measures, procedural safeguards, and institutional arrangements to balance commercial mining with environmental protection. This is especially important given the urgent need to utilize existing legal and institutional frameworks, such as the isa, to protect marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. This article analyses the isa’s mandate to adopt a comprehensive environmental management strategy. It outlines the legal basis of eight potential components of such a strategy. Although several of these have been endorsed by the isa on a temporary or ad hoc basis, substantial gaps remain. An environmental management strategy could provide for systematic environmental safeguards during both exploration and exploitation for minerals.

Journal

The International Journal of Marine and Coastal LawBrill

Published: Feb 13, 2015

Keywords: International Seabed Authority; deep seabed mining; marine environment; Exploration Regulations; marine biodiversity; environmental impact

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