25 January, 2017

Authors: Aline Jaeckel , Kristina M. Gjerde , Jeff A. Ardron

ABSTRACT: The seabed in areas beyond national jurisdiction is the common heritage of mankind (CHM), as declared in the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. The CHM principle requires not only the sharing of benefits (the subject of a parallel article by the authors) but also the conservation and preservation of natural and biological resources for both present and future generations. The International Seabed Authority, tasked with operationalising the CHM principle in the context of deep-seabed mining, has not yet defined which measures it will take to give effect to environmental aspects of the CHM principle. This article seeks to contribute to the discussion about the operationalization of the CHM principle by specifically examining the environmental dimension of the CHM principle. To this end, the article interprets the CHM principle in the context of sustainable development and discusses a number of potential options the Authority could consider to support the application of the CHM principle. These include: funding scientific research to increase knowledge about the deep ocean for humankind; ensuring public participation in the decision-making process; debating the need for and alternatives to deep-seabed mining; determining conservation targets and levels of harm deemed acceptable; limiting environmental impacts; preserving mineable sites for future generations; compensating humankind for environmental harm; and ensuring enforcement.

Available in: English

1 December, 2016

Oceans are essential to human survival and prosperity, yet our activities are pushing many critical marine species toward extinction. Marine biologists suggest that the best way to maintain the oceans’ diversity, abundance and resilience is to protect marine life in their ecosystems, especially in marine protected areas that minimize extractive activities such as – fishing, mining and oil and gas development.

Available in English.

11 July, 2016

Source: UTS

Authors: Sven Teske, Nick Florin, Elsa Dominish, Damien Giurco.

This report examines the intersection of future demand for metals and available supply in the context of a renewable energy future. Metals that might be subject to future deep-sea-mining operations have been considered in this analysis to understand the likely increase in demand and possible implications for deep-sea mining. These insights can also inform consideration of the ways to reduce the demand by increasing the intensity of use and recycling.

Available in English.

2 May, 2016

Source: World Bank

Pacific Island countries face unique development challenges. They are far away from major markets, often with small populations spread across many islands and vast distances, and are at the forefront of climate change and its impacts. Because of this, much research has focused on the challenges and constraints faced by Pacific Island countries, and finding ways to respond to these.

Available in English.


1 August, 2015

During the past few years, the term “Blue Economy” or “Blue Growth” has surged into common policy usage, all over the world. For some, Blue Economy means the use of the sea and its resources for sustainable eco-nomic development. For others, it simply refers to any economic activity in the maritime sector, whether sustainable or not.

Available in English.