Table of Contents

Research Handbook on International Marine Environmental Law

Research Handbook on International Marine Environmental Law

Research Handbooks in Environmental Law series

Edited by Rosemary Rayfuse

This authoritative Handbook examines the current state and the future needs of international law in addressing the key activities that pose threats to the marine environment. Its chapters explore the legal framework for protection of the marine environment, pollution of the marine environment, seabed activities and the marine environment, protection of marine biodiversity, regional approaches to the protection of the marine environment and climate change and the marine environment. Each chapter goes beyond a survey of existing law to identify the shortcomings in the legal regime and areas of critical research needed to address these shortcomings. This book provides significant insights into contemporary issues surrounding the efficacy of the regime created by the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention and details the further work needed to ensure the design and implementation of effective regulation and management of human activities that affect the marine environment.

Chapter 7: Protecting the marine environment of the deep seabed

Michael Lodge

Subjects: environment, environmental law, law - academic, environmental law, public international law


This chapter discusses the legal aspects of the protection of the marine environment of the deep seabed beyond the outer limits of the continental shelf, specifically its protection from the potential adverse effects caused by seabed mining. The legal framework for the protection of the marine environment from activities in the Area is contained in the LOSC, the 1994 Agreement Relating to the Implementation of Part XI of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and the rules, regulations and procedures adopted by the International Seabed Authority (ISA). Some of these provisions specifically address protection of the environment, while others are more general but are also relevant to environmental protection. Rules for the protection of the marine environment are adopted by the ISA and implemented by the ISA itself, States sponsoring activities in the Area, and contractors carrying out such activities. This chapter describes the basic legal framework for environmental regulation of activities in the Area and the rules, regulations and procedures issued by ISA to give effect to that framework. The chapter will then discuss the way in which the regulatory system is implemented and continues to evolve through the development and application of best environmental practices as well as a focus on environmental management at regional scale. Finally, note is made of some of the issues that will require further development in the future.

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