The University of New South Wales (UNSW) is hiring a Research Fellow to contribute towards the research project of SHARP Professor Natalie Klein of the UNSW Law & Justice Faculty (School of Public and Global Law). The research project will be focused on the law of the sea, maritime security, state responsibility and international dispute settlement. The Research Fellow will provide high level research and administrative support, as well as undertake independent research and writing on a specific project on maritime security and international law. More information is available here.
The International Seabed Authority (ISA) is seeking a Legal Consultant (January 2022-July 2023) to “identify, prepare, review and revise the phase two standards and guidelines for activities in the international seabed area (the Area) and provide advice for the finalization of the Draft Regulations on Exploitation of Mineral Resources in the Area”. Proposals are welcome until 4 December 2021. For more information see here and here.
The Faculty of Law at Nelson Mandela University will host the 5th Law and Development Research Network Conference, entitled, Beyond the Crisis: Challenges and Opportunities for Law and Development, 24 – 26 November 2021, Online. Numerous panels are organised under the sub-theme, the law of the sea and development. For more information see here and the programme.
The Government of Kiribati decided to lift the closure and apply a Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) to sustainably use marine resources in the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA). The Phoenix Islands Protected Area was first established in 2006. The closure of PIPA to commercial fishing activities or as a no take zone was realised in 2015. More information on the PIPA can be found in a dedicated UNESCO World Heritage Centre page. The press release from the Ministry of Fisheries & Marine Development of Kiribati can be read below:
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is currently seeking applications for the 2022-2023 Judicial Fellowship Programme of the International Court of Justice. Normally up to 15 applicants are accepted per year for the full-time (10 month) Judicial Fellow positions. Submissions are welcome until 13 February 2022, but only from nominating universities and not individuals. For more information see here. To see the cases currently pending before the ICJ, including numerous law of the sea cases, see here.
French think tank Institut du développement durable et des relations internationales (IDDRI) is hiring a policy officer on coastal and maritime economy. The selected candidate is expected to support IDDRI’s “ocean team” in the implementation of ongoing projects, especially on high seas and regional ocean governance. Applications should be sent by 26 November 2021. More details can be found here.
The Maritime Institute of Malaysia (MIMA) will organise the 10th MIMA International Conference on the Straits of Malacca 2021, entitled, Straits of Malacca: Safety, Security, Economy, Environmental Protection & Global Interruption in Maritime Trade, 25 November 2021, in a hybrid format (Intercontinental Hotel, Kuala Lumpur/Online). For more information see here.
The Permanent Mission of Turkey to the United Nations, together with the Marine & Environmental Law Institute of Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University, Centre for International Law at the National University of Singapore, and the University of Sydney, shall host a panel discussion, themed, Climate Change and the Ocean at COP 26/CMA 3, 8 November 2021, online (Zoom), to celebrate the launch of The Research Handbook on Ocean Acidification Law and Policy (Edward Elgar, 2021). For more information see here.
Antigua and Barbuda/Tuvalu: Accord to Establish Commission of Small Island States on Climate Change & International Law
On 1 November 2021, Prime Minister Gaston Browne (Antigua and Barbuda) and Prime Minister Kausea Natano (Tuvalu) announced the signing of an Accord on 31 October 2021 which establishes a Commission of Small Island Developing States on Climate Change and International Law. The Commission is open to all small island states globally to join. During the Press Conference, the founding members signalled that the Accord authorises the Commission to request an advisory opinion from ITLOS concerning climate change, sea-level rise, protection of the marine environment and international responsibilities. The exact strategy, including potential questions to be put before ITLOS, are to be developed by the Commission. On the advisory opinion jurisdiction of ITLOS, see Articles 16 and 21 of the Statute of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (Annex VI of UNCLOS); Article 138 of the Rules of the Tribunal; and the SRFC Advisory Opinion.
The Korea Maritime Institute is hosting the 8th Yeosu Academy of the Law of the Sea, 6-15 December 2021, online. Applications are welcome until 21 November 2021. Applicants should be from countries on the DAC List of ODA Recipients by OECD and no fees apply.
Events: La contribución de la Unión Europea a la protección de los recursos biológicos en espacios marinos de interés internacional
The Spanish Association of Professors of International Law and International Relations (AEPDIRI) is hosting its congress on The contribution of the European Union to the protection of biological resources in marine areas of international interest. The event takes place 4-5 November 2021 at the premises of the University of Cordoba (Spain). The programme is available here.
Events: La controversia de la Fragata ARA Libertad ante el Tribunal Internacional del Derecho del Mar
The Law Faculty of the University of Buenos Aires (Argentina) is hosting an event on The “ARA Libertad” Case (Argentina v. Ghana), Provisional Measures, held before the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in 2012 (Case No. 20). This event takes place on 18 November 2021. Registration is open here (in Spanish) and the programme is available here (in Spanish).
The International Seabed Authority (ISA) shall host a Women in the Law of the Sea Conference, themed, Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the Adoption of UNCLOS, in March-June 2022 (dates to be confirmed). Abstracts are welcome until 11 February 2022, with the conference intended to primarily hear from women legal experts working in the field of the law of the sea. For more information see here and here.
The Ocean Policy Research Institute (OPRI) of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation has opened a vacancy for a Research Fellow or Senior Research Fellow. The selected candidate shall assist in gathering and analyzing information to promote ocean policy dialogues mainly targeting island countries including the Pacific, Asia, Indo-Pacific, Africa, regional and international organizations with a focus on ocean-related policies, legal systems, sustainability, and coordination with international initiatives. The application deadline is 19 November 2021. More information is available here
As of 30 September 2021, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) has established a Junior Professional Officer Programme for young professionals to serve in the Tribunal’s Registry, including the Legal Office. The Guidelines concerning the Junior Professional Officer Programme of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea will govern the programme, which includes the necessity of concluding a memoranda of understanding between the Tribunal and a participating (sponsoring) State for the recruitment of Junior Professional Officer(s) (see Model MoU).
The China Oceanic Development Foundation, the Dalian Maritime University, and the University of Genoa are jointly hosting a seminar entitled Sea Lane Security between China and Europe. This event is set to happen online on 30-31 October 2021. The program is available here. Further information is available here.
The Diplomatic Academy of Viet Nam is seeking applicants for the Young Leaders Program 2021 under the framework of the 13th South China Sea International Conference, themed, Looking Back to a Brighter Future, 17-20 November 2021, with a follow-up phase until 15 December 2021. Applications are welcome until 11 November 2021. For more information see here.
The China Institute of Boundary and Ocean Studies (CIBOS) of Wuhan University is hosting a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on “The Establishment of the Outer Limits of the Continental Shelf: Science, Technology and Law”. This event is taking place through October and November 2021. This MOOC aims to introduce the legal regime of the continental shelf and the work of the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS). Registration is open here.
The Malaysia Institute of Australian National University has announced four DFAT-funded Malaysia-Australia Maritime Exchange Virtual Visiting Research Fellowships, to begin January 2022 and address “research on key maritime issues of interest to Australia, Malaysia and the Southeast Asian region”. This includes two Malaysian-based Fellows (to be hosted virtually by an Australian Institution) and two Australian-based Fellows (to be hosted virtually by a Malaysian institution). Applications are welcome until 30 October 2021. For more information and to apply see here.
California State Lands Commission adopted regulatory amendments that will implement the federal ballast water discharge standards of the United States of America (USA) for vessels arriving at California ports. These changes will become effective on 1 January 2022.
The State rules apply to vessels over 300GT that are capable of carrying ballast water. The ballast water management requirements address vessels arriving in California Waters from a port or place outside the Pacific Coast Region and vessels arriving in California Waters from a port or place within the Pacific Coast Region, with ballast water from the Pacific Coast Region. The Pacific Coast Region (PCR) comprises the waters within 200nm of land on the Pacific Coast of North America east of 154°W longitude and north of 25°N latitude, excluding the Gulf of California.
The Commission’s press release dated 15 October 2021 is here. A brochure from the Commission’s Marine Invasive Species Program (MISP) with a summary of the regulatory changes is available here. A commentary published by marine insurance company North P&I on these measures is available here.
The Centre d’Études et de Recherches Internationales et Communautaires (CERIC) and the Institut du Droit Economique de la Mer (INDEMER) are organizing a colloquium on conflicts of use at sea, focusing on the conciliation of human activities in European waters. The event takes place on 18-19 November 20201 at the Law Faculty of the Université d’Aix Marseille. The programme is available here; registration is mandatory.
The Interdepartmental Research Center on the Adriatic and the Mediterranean of the University of Macerata (CiRAM) will host a webinar, entitled, Le implicazioni dell’innalzamento del livello del mare sul diritto internazionale/Les implications de l’elevation du niveau de la mer pour le droit international, 12 November 2021, online (Blackboard Collaborate). For more information see here and the programme.
The NUS Centre for International Law is hosting a series of webinars on Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the first webinar, entitled, MASS and the Marine Environment, will take place 27 October 2021, online (Zoom). For more information see here.
The International Relations and Defence Committee of the UK Parliament is undertaking an inquiry into the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), entitled, UNCLOS: fit for purpose in the 21st century?, including a call for written evidence concerning a series of questions posed by the Committee. Written evidence at this stage is welcome until 12 November 2021. The first oral evidence session will also take place 20 October 2021 and may be watched online.
For more information see the call for evidence.
The Supreme Federal Court (STF) of Brazil upheld the appeal of family members of a fisherman who want the Federal Republic of Germany to compensate them for his death in 1943, when a fishing boat was sunk by a German submarine off the Brazilian coast. By majority vote, the STF established the thesis that unlawful acts committed by foreign States in violation of human rights do not enjoy immunity from jurisdiction in Brazil. Reference: (ARE) 954858.
The attack on the fishing boat Changri-lá killed ten fishermen in July 1943, during World War II, in Brazilian territorial sea, near Cabo Frio (RJ). In 2001, the Maritime Court officially recognized that the cause of the wreck was the torpedoing of the vessel by a German U-199 submarine, leading the grandchildren and widows of one of the fishermen’s grandchildren to file, in 2006, an action for compensation for material and moral damages. In the first instance, the action for reparation was dismissed without a resolution on the merits. The family appealed to the Superior Court of Justice (STJ), but the appeal was not admitted based on the jurisprudence of that Court, which prevents the foreign State from being held liable for an act of war.
The Netherlands Institute for the Law of the Sea (NILOS) has announced the third edition of the NILOS Moot Court Competition, with the international rounds scheduled to take place from 9-13 May 2022, online. The Competition Case is expected to be published 15 October 2021 and team registration (free of charge) is open until 15 December 2021. Registration for judges is expected to open soon.
On 1 October 2021, OSPAR held a hybrid ministerial meeting hosted by the Government of Portugal (postponed from June 2020 due to the pandemic), the outcomes of which included a legally binding OSPAR Decision to establish the North Atlantic Current and Evlanov Sea basin Marine Protected Area (NACES MPA). The NACES MPA (595,196 square km) is established in the high seas and seeks to protect a vitally important area for seabirds. For more information see here and here.
The International Court of Justice has delivered on 12 October 2021 its Judgment in the case concerning Maritime Delimitation in the Indian Ocean (Somalia v. Kenya). The Court found that there was no agreed maritime boundary between the Federal Republic of Somalia and the Republic of Kenya and proceeded to determine the course of that maritime boundary. The Court also rejected the claim made by the Federal Republic of Somalia concerning the allegation that the Republic of Kenya, by its conduct in the disputed area, had violated its international obligations. The judgment may be found here.
The Jean Monnet Network on Migration and Asylum Policies Systems shall host a conference, entitled, Irregular Migrations in Europe: A Perspective from the Sea Basins, 22 October 2021, in a hybrid format (MS Teams/University of A Coruña, Spain). For more information see here.
The Polar Cooperation Research Centre (Kobe University, Japan), Polar Law Institute (University of Akureyri, Iceland), the Northern Institute for Environmental and Minority Law – Arctic Centre (University of Lapland, Finland) and the University of the Arctic and its Arctic Law Thematic Network (Finland) shall co-host the 14th Polar Law Symposium 2021, themed, The Blue Earth, from the Poles, through the Law, 21-23 November 2021, in a hybrid format (Online/Kobe University, Japan). For more information see the provisional program and registration.
Arbitration Lab will host the Basel Winter Arbitration School, 6-11 February 2022, at the Law Faculty of the University of Basel (Switzerland). The curriculum includes UNCLOS arbitration. Applications are welcome until 15 November 2021. For more information see here.
The academic journal Marine Policy launched a Special Issue Call for Papers entitled ‘MSP in Europe: Impacts of the EU MSP Directive’. The focus is on the practical experiences of Member States in implementing the Directive and also on the wider transnational and policy context that is shaping MSP in Europe and the intentions of the MSP Directive itself. Deadline for submission of papers is 15 December 2021. More information is available here.
The European Society of International Law (ESIL) is hosting its 17th Annual Conference, themed, In/Ex-clusiveness of International Law, 1-3 September 2022, at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. The main conference will be preceded by various workshops organised by the Society’s Interest Groups, 31 August-1 September 2022. Abstracts are welcome until 31 January 2022. For more information see here.
The Supreme Court of New Zealand (SCNZ) decided (30 September 2021) to uphold previous High Court and Court of Appeal decisions quashing consents granted by the Decision Making Committee (DMC) of New Zealand’s Environmental Protection Agency that would have allowed mining company Trans-Tasman Resources Limited (TTR) to extract up to 50 million tonnes per annum from the South Taranaki Bight seabed (Case number  NZSC 127).
Among other issues of domestic law, SCNZ found that in considering the effect of the Treaty of Waitangi to the Exclusive Economic Zone and Continental Shelf (Environmental Effects) Act 2012, the DMC should have taken into account the effects of the proposed activity on existing interests adding that tikanga-based customary rights and interests constitute “existing interests” (…) including kaitiakitanga and rights claimed, but not yet granted, under the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011. The court considered that the proposed activity in terms of tikanga may indicate that material harm extends beyond the physical effects of a discharge, or that pollution can be spiritual as well as physical.
A press release with further details on the case Trans-Tasman Resources Ltd v Taranaki-Whanganui Conservation Board is available here.
This year’s World Maritime Day, themed, Seafarers: at the core of shipping’s future, will include various webinars on 30 September 2021. IMO shall host a webinar, entitled, Seafarers: at the core of shipping’s future; UNCTAD and ITF shall host a webinar, entitled, The Crewing Crisis: Seafarers concerns in times of the pandemic and beyond; and AIS Forum shall host a webinar, entitled, Connecting Maritime Governance with the Achievement of the SDGs in Archipelagic and Island States.
On 22 September 2021 the Alliance of Small Islands (AOSIS), during a virtual AOSIS Leaders’ Summit, endorsed The Alliance of Small Islands Leaders’ Declaration 2021. The Leaders’ Declaration focuses on climate change, sustainable development and the ocean. This includes recognising states’ ocean-related responsibilities (preamble), the existing impacts of climate change on SIDS (para. 3), concerns over GHG emissions from shipping and the need for action (para. 15), the BBNJ Agreement process (paras. 39-40), fixed baselines and outer limits of maritime zones – once given due publicity (para. 41), marine plastic pollution –and more generally the need for a new legally binding global agreement on plastic pollution– (paras. 42-43) and enhancing technology transfer, scientific knowledge and recognition of traditional knowledge (para. 44).
The University of Aberdeen will host a conference, entitled, International Law and Technological Progress Conference 2022, 23-24 June 2022, in a hybrid format. Several law of the sea topics are included in the call, and one could envisage further suitable topics. Abstracts are welcome until 20 December 2021. For more information see here.
On 20 September 2021 Ecuador submitted, in respect of three regions, its Preliminary information indicative of the outer limits of the continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS). For more information see here.
Rajah & Tann LLP, Fietta LLP, Duxton Hill Chambers, David Grief International Consultancy and the University of Sydney shall host a webinar, entitled, The Ever-Expanding Remit of UNCLOS Tribunals, 6 October 2021, via Zoom. for more information see here.
The previously reported monthly webinars, MARIPOLDATA Ocean Seminar Series, hosted by the MARIPOLDATA research project, has released their programme for September 2021 – January 2022. The next event, entitled, Deep-Sea Mining and the International Seabed Authority: Recent Developments, key outstanding issues and contrasting narratives is scheduled for 29 September 2021. For more information see here.
Independent International Legal Advocates (IILA), together with the Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL) Seminar at UCLA Law and the International Arbitration Group of Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher LLP, will host a seminar, entitled, Reconceptualizing the “Spaces” of International Law, 28 September 2021, via Zoom. For more information see here.
The Maritime Security Research Group in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra is currently advertising a PhD candidate position, including scholarship, entitled, Small States and Climate Change Litigation under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. Application are welcome until 15 October 2021. For more information and how to apply see here.