Offsetting to Fund Scientific Research Deep-sea mining in seabed areas beyond national jurisdiction ( abnj ), or ‘the Area’ as it is called in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea ( losc ), 1 is on the cusp of becoming a reality. The International Seabed Authority ( isa ), established by losc Part xi , is mandated with developing and overseeing the regulatory regime for the Area. 2 isa ’s mandate includes encouraging prospecting in the Area while ensuring effective protection of the marine environment and the promotion of marine scientific research. 3 To date, isa has granted twenty-one 15-year Exploration Contracts. 4 These contracts require the licensed developers to undertake environmental baseline studies, to progressively relinquish percentages of the licensed areas, 5 and commit to annual reporting and review. 6 The isa is currently in the process of formulating a Mineral Exploitation Code 7 and, as recently discussed in this journal, has some way to go to put in place a holistic environmental management strategy. 8 The regulatory regime is therefore developing but incomplete. This is especially true of the fiscal regime for exploitation, for which costs and benefits need to be
The International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law – Brill
Published: Jul 9, 2015
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