Annual Session Room

 On Tuesday, the Council of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) continued its deliberations on components of the draft regulations for exploitation of mineral resources in the Area, focusing on:

  • regulatory efficiency, including potential delegation of functions by the Council to the Secretariat;

  • the relationship between the draft exploitation regulations and regional environmental management plans (REMPs); and

  • implementation of the precautionary approach to activities in the Area.

Highlights of the day include:

  • general agreement that REMPs should be developed before commercial mining activities commence;

  • in-depth discussion on which functions of the Council could be delegated to the Secretariat to increase efficiency; and

  • agreement on the importance of implementing the precautionary approach/principle to activities in the Area, but ongoing debate about which terminology to use.

During lunchtime, a side event organized by the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies in Potsdam, and the German Environment Agency (Umweltbundesamt), focused on developing a benefit-sharing mechanism appropriate for the common heritage of mankind.

For extensive details on the day’s negotiations and to hear what delegates said in the corridors, see our daily Earth Negotiations Bulletin.