Unilateral pollution control in the Northwest Passage : the Canadian NORDREG regulations in the context of UNCLOS, Article 234
To safeguard the Canadian Arctic marine environment, Canada established an Arctic marine traffic system, known as the Northern Canada Vessel Traffic Services Zone Regulations (NORDREG). These mandatory regulations require most nongovernmental vessels to report information prior to entering, while operating within and upon exiting Canada’s northern/Arctic waters. Canada asserts that the traffic system is consistent with international law concerning ice-covered areas, in particular with the “Arctic Exception” of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), Article 234. This Article stipulates the right of coastal states to adopt laws and regulations for the prevention, reduction and control of marine pollution from vessels in ice-covered areas. Canada takes the view that the Article provides a complete legal justification under international law. Thus it is under no obligation to consult the International Maritime Organization (IMO) for approval of the NORDREG system. The objective of this thesis is to exemplify the problematic legal nature of implementation of the NORDREG regulation, covered by the jurisdictional dispute concerning the controversial legal status of the Northwest Passage (NWP).
PublisherUniversitetet i Tromsø
University of Tromsø
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