Under the Law of the Sea, coastal states may be granted sovereign rights to the continental shelf up to 350 nautical miles from their coast. These rights allow for undersea mining. Various nations are making moves to exercise these rights in the Arctic and Southern Oceans especially concerning oil and gas deposits. The claims conflict with each other and also with environmental concerns about the dangers of mining in the Polar regions. These concerns are not limited to the possibility of local damage to fragile environments but also relate to the impact of mining on global carbon dioxide levels and hence the quality of life on earth. The Law of the Sea offers little help in deciding between these claims and concerns and fuels the international conflict.
|Keywords:||Ocean Governance, Law of the Sea, Undersea Mining, Climate Change|
Research Fellow, Philosophy, Faculty of Arts, University of Wollongong, Thirroul, NSW, Australia
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