BIICL - Deep seabed mining & International Law: is a precautionary pause required?

On 31 May 2023, this webinar explored the key legal, environmental and social implications of deep-sea mining and whether international law needs to implement a moratorium or introduce a precautionary pause until its social and environmental implications are better understood.

This has become a topic of intense debate globally with governments, NGOs and companies all weighing in on this issue. Given the significant potential implications of deep sea mining for the future of our planet, there indeed seems to be a growing call for a moratorium or a precautionary pause.

The panel tackled the following questions:

  • Should states and companies prioritise precautionary measures before engaging in commercial exploitation of the deep seabed?
  • What specific precautionary measures should be implemented in this regard?
  • If a precautionary pause is deemed necessary, what additional collaborative measures should member states take, in accordance with UNCLOS, to enhance scientific knowledge and establish a robust framework for responsible exploitation of deep-sea resources?

Our European Head of Human Rights and Environmental Law, Ingrid Gubbay chaired the panel of eminent speakers: Monica Feria-Tinta, Barrister, Twenty Essex; Toby Fisher, Barrister Matrix Chambers, Former Deputy Director, International Law at New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade and Associate Prof. Dr Aline Jaeckel, Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources & Security, University of Wollongong.

Practical arrangements

This online event was held on 31 May between 10.00 and 11.30 BST.

More info