The Legal and Technical Commission (LTC) of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) opened the meetings of the second part of its 27th session, which is taking place in Kingston, Jamaica from 4 to 15 July 2022.

Mr. Harald Brekke (Norway) and Mr. Thembile Joyini (South Africa) are respectively acting as Chair and Vice-Chair of the Part II of 27th session of the LTC following their re-election during the first part of the 27th session in March 2022.

In his opening remarks, ISA Secretary-General, H.E. Mr. Michael W. Lodge, commended the members of the LTC for their important achievements over the past six years. Among others, the Secretary-General cited the preparation and submission to the Council of the draft exploitation regulations and of a set of ten draft standards and guidelines; the review of the implementation of the environmental management plan for the Clarion-Clipperton Zone and the identification of four new areas of particular environmental interest; and the development and implementation of ISA’s data management strategy.

During the meetings over the course of two weeks, the members of the LTC will consider the annual reports of exploration contractors and the status of i) exploration contracts, ii) periodic reviews of the implementation of plans of work for exploration, iii) training programmes under plans of work for exploration and iv) relinquishment of areas under exploration contracts.

Further, the LTC members will review the submissions received during the public consultation on the draft regional environmental management plan (REMP) for the northern Mid-Atlantic Ridge and will discuss the guidance document to facilitate the development of REMPs which was drafted intersessionally by one of the working groups of the Commission.

The LTC members will also continue their consideration of the draft procedure and criteria for the transfer of rights and obligations under a contract for exploration, and will review the Recommendations for the guidance of contractors and sponsoring States relating to training programmes under plans of work for exploration as well as the Recommendations for the guidance of contractors for the assessment of the possible environmental impacts arising from exploration for marine minerals in the Area.

The LTC will also continue the review of the amended environmental impact statement submitted by Nauru Ocean Resources Inc. on 2 May 2022.

The LTC is a body of experts nominated by ISA Members and elected by the ISA Council to serve in their individual capacity. The current LTC consists of 30 members who were elected in 2016 for a five-year term from 2017 to 2021. In 2021, the term was extended for an additional year until the end of 2022 on an exceptional basis due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impossibility to elect the new members. The elections of new members are scheduled to take place during part II of the 27th session of the ISA Council in July 2022.

More information on the 27th session of the LTC can be found here.


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Ms. Stefanie Neno, Communications Specialist, ISA,