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The Protection and Preservation of the Marine Environment under International Law

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Chapter Summary

The legal regime for the protection of the marine environment has its own peculiarities compared to the one governing the protection of the terrestrial environment. This chapter provides a general overview of the international regime for the protection of the marine environment, without pretending to be exhaustive. The umbrella regime for the protection and preservation of the marine environment is composed, first of all, of principles of customary international law. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOSC) recognizes that uses and problems of marine space are closely interrelated and must be considered as a whole. The LOSC normally refers to generally “accepted” international rules and standards (GAIRAS) with regard to the exercise of prescriptive jurisdiction. In addition to the Regional Seas Conventions, a number of “sectoral” agreements play an important role in the implementation of the global regime in European Seas.

Keywords: European Seas; GAIRAS; international law; international regime; LOSC; marine environment; Regional Seas Conventions



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