The rules and procedures governing liability for damages arising from mining activities will be a crucial aspect of the development of the Mining Code. While the basic legal architecture of a liability system has been addressed in the provisions (art. 139 (2), and Annex III, art.22) of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and elaborated upon by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in its advisory opinion on Activities in the Area, there remain both substantive and procedural gaps that will need to be addressed prior to the commencement of the mineral exploitation phase. An initial workshop was held in fall of 2017 to scope out critical issues, legal intersections, and available models for consideration. Participants were committed to a work plan and tasked with developing draft papers to elucidate crucial challenges and areas of opportunity.
The objective of the second workshop will be for the working group to review the draft papers developed under the work plan. Given the potentially large scope of the issues involved, the workshop will focus on providing constructive guidance on the issues addressed in the draft papers so that they can constructively contribute to the development of a legal framework.
Neil Craik is a CIGI senior fellow, effective June 2015. He is an associate professor at the University of Waterloo with appointments to the Balsillie School of International Affairs and the School of Environment, Enterprise and Development, where he teaches and researches in the fields of international and Canadian environmental law.