Oceans Law & Policy


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Professors John Norton Moore

University of Virginia School of Law

Spring 2014

This course is taught by the former U.S. Ambassador and Chairman of the National Security Council Interagency Task Force on the Law of the Sea, which coordinated United States oceans policy during the critical early negotiations leading to the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention. The course begins by examining the goals of oceans policy, outlining both community and United States' interests; providing several frameworks for analysis; then defining oceans claims and their political, economic, and strategic context. After a brief introduction to oceanography, the course moves into a detailed discussion of issues in international oceans policy, including the Law of the Sea and U.S. policy, the Third UN Conference on the Law of the Sea and the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, sources of current oceans law, navigation and communication, the economic zone, straddling stocks and highly migratory species, the continental margin, protection of the marine environment, marine scientific research, boundary disputes and dispute settlement, deep seabed mining, national security and international incidents, and polar policy. This section ends with an examination of several case studies on illegal oceans claims and strategies for their control. In its final section, the course explores issues in national oceans policy, focusing on the Navy, Merchant Marine development, fisheries management and aquaculture, continental shelf development, coastal zone management, and organization of the national oceans policy process and the future of oceans policy.

Oceans Law and Policy meets Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, from 1:00-2:00 p.m. at the University of Virginia School of Law.