Workshop: "Towards an ISA Environmental Management Strategy for the Area"

JAMAICA, Kingston (22 March 2017) - - Secretary-General Michael Lodge was opening speaker at the UBA/BGR/ISA International Workshop currently being held in Berlin, Germany. 

In his opening remarks, Secretary-General Lodge said the Authority’s mandate is limited to ‘activities in the Area’, which are defined as exploration for and exploitation of deep seabed mineral resources. 

“The Authority’s main responsibility with regard to the marine environment is to ‘prevent, reduce and control pollution and other hazards’ to the marine environment, where ‘pollution’ is a defined term in Article 1 of the Convention.”
 
“It is true that we are regulating a new activity. There may be many questions and doubts about the long-term consequences. But we need to take a rational and incremental approach. This industry is not going to happen overnight. Contractors will advance their activities according to different timescales. “
 
“We have an impressive range of expertise in the room and a diverse range of views and opinions. Nevertheless, I am confident that collectively, and through focused conversations at expert level, we can identify the necessary solutions to build a Mining Code that allows for the sustainable development of mineral resources in the Area in a way that balances commercial and environmental considerations.”
 
The workshop is being held from 19-24 March 2017 and is jointly organized by the German Environment Agency (UBA) on behalf of the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) on behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and the Secretariat of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) and supported by the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies Potsdam e.V. (IASS).

The objective of the workshop is to help the Authority to design a strategy for environmental management of deep seabed mining and aims to deal with governance issues such as overarching principles, regional planning and adaptive management.

Participants include representatives from non-governmental organizations, scientific and legal institutions and private and public sector from Australia, Belgium,  Brazil, Cameroon, China, Cook Islands, Germany,  India, Jamaica, Japan, Nauru, New Zealand, Netherlands, Norway,  Poland,  Singapore,  United Kingdom and United States of America.

Full Statement  | Photos ©BGR

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