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[The ‘Rainbow’: The First National Marine Protected Area Proposed Under the High Seas, News and Views Presumed Consent in Organ Donation: Is the Duty Finally upon Us?]

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[The discovery of the ‘Rainbow’, a hydrothermal vent field located in the Portuguese continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles, has prompted new thinking in our understanding of the law of the sea. In 2006, in the context of the OSPAR Convention, Portugal proposed the nomination of the first national marine protected area under the high seas. The subsequent acceptance of the proposal by the OSPAR Convention members makes Portugal a pioneer in the protection of marine biodiversity at an international level: first, because of the unique location of the marine protected area; second, because the nomination was accepted at a stage when the process of delineation of the outer limits of the continental shelf had not been concluded. The new juridical perspectives stimulated by these facts are addressed in this article., In recent years there has been a renewed interest in presumed consent systems for organ donation. The UK’s Organ Donation (Presumed Consent and Safeguards) Bill of 2004 proposed a sweeping change in the law in the form of an opt-out system for the donation of cadaver organs. The Organ Donation Task-force in 2008 later examined the idea of presumed consent at length, before concluding that our current organ procurement system needs a radical overhaul. Most recently, the Organ Donation (Presumed Consent) Bill of 2009 (“the 2009 Bill”) provided the most comprehensive proposal yet for an opt-out organ donation system in the United Kingdom. Is it now time to take this controversial issue seriously? If the 2009 Bill provides a window into the future, what practical and ethical difficulties will this new presumed consent legislation impart upon our current organ procurement system? This article will provide an overview of the previous attempts in the U.K. to implement an opt-out system for organ donation, before examining in detail the content of the 2009 Bill as a potential template for a new presumed consent law. Finally, some sweeping amendments to the 2009 Bill will be suggested, and it will be concluded that a new piece of legislation may change our national and international views of organ donation for the better.]

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/content/journals/10.1163/157180910x12665776638669
2010-03-01
2015-01-31

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