Online workshop on the protection of deep-seabed ecosystems

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On 13-15 December 2021, the online workshop ‘Protecting deep seabed ecosystems under the future Agreement on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of BBNJ and by the ISA – Perspectives of Government, Civil Society, Stakeholders, and Law and Science’ was convened. The workshop was organized by the Netherlands Institute for the Law of the Sea (NILOS), the Utrecht Centre for Water, Oceans and Sustainability Law (UCWOSL) of Utrecht University, and the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in collaboration with The Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ). The workshop was also closely connected to the joint UU-NIOZ project Protecting deep seabed hydrothermal vent fields through area-based management tools.

The workshop report is now available via the link below:

Workshop report Protecting deep seabed ecosystems

Download the final programme. The links to pdfs of most of the presentations can be found below. 

Monday 13 December 2021

Session 1 – The ISA and the future Agreement on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of BBNJ

Alex Oude Elferink (NILOS and UCWOSL)

“Introduction to the BBNJ Process and the ISA” (presentation and speaking notes)

Session 2 – The role of civil society, stakeholders and science in the protection of deep seabed ecosystems: perspectives on the BBNJ process, the future Agreement on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of BBNJ and the ISA

Anna Metaxas (Dalhousie University)

Ecological connections between the Area and the High Seas: considerations for management


Duncan Currie (Deep Sea Conservation Coalition)

“Civil society and transparency in the future BBNJ Agreement and implications for the ISA”

Tuesday 14 December 2021

Session 3 – ABMTs and MPAs and their relationship

Elisabetta Menini (Duke University)

“The Global Management of Deep-sea Hydrothermal Vents”


Catherine Blanchard (NIOZ/UU) and Lise Klunder (NIOZ)

“Protecting deep sea hydrothermal vent biodiversity through ABMTs”

Session 4 – The EBSA process and the ISA

Daniela Diz (Heriot Watt University)

“An introduction to EBSAs: Their legal basis and the evolution of the EBSA process under the CBD”


Kristina Gjerde (IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme)

“Responsibility for conserving marine biodiversity in ABNJ: case study on CBD EBSAs, ISA and the BBNJ Agreement”


Pat Halpin (Duke University)

The scientific process for describing CBD EBSAs versus ISA Sites and Areas in Need of Protection”

Wednesday 15 December 2021

Session 5 – The work on REMPs and APEIs in the framework of the ISA, with a focus on the work on the Clarion-Clipperton Zone and Mid-Atlantic Ridge from a comparative perspective

Sabine Gollner (NIOZ)

“Scientific data for effective REMPs”


Harald Ginzky (German Environment Agency)

“Regional Environmental Management Plans for Deep Seabed Mining. A policy perspective”


Samantha Smith (Global Sea Mineral Resources)

“The Clarion Clipperton Zone REMP: Part of the Environmental Obligations in the Area”


Matthew Gianni (Deep Sea Conservation Coalition)

“REMPs, APEIs and the conservation of biodiversity in the marine environment”