Regional Environmental Management Plans

Regional Environmental Management Plans (REMPs) are to be drawn up for all regions of “The Area" in which mining activities ranging from exploration to exploitation are being carried out or are planned.

The purpose of these plans is to harmonize mining uses with environmental concerns, to fill knowledge gaps, to identify and deal with cumulative effects, and to address competing uses with other licit uses (e.g., fishing, cable laying).

In 2012, such a plan (Environmental Management Plan) was adopted for the Clarion Clipperton Zone. Others are in preparation. Negotiations are also underway to standardize the preparation as well as the content of such REMPs. Germany, the Netherlands and Costa Rica submitted corresponding requests in February 2020.

In 2018, the Council identified additional areas for which corresponding REMPs are to be developed. The following ones were agreed upon: "The Mid-Atlantic Ridge, the Central Indian Ocean, the Mid-Ocean Ridge of the Indian Ocean, and the Sea Mountain Provinces of the Northwest Pacific and the South Atlantic." Ever since, a number of international workshops have been held to technically prepare the REMPs and finalize the necessary specifications for the respective areas depending on the resource categories, mining methods, and ecosystem protection needs. Relevant knowledge gaps have been considered. Information on the aforementioned workshops to prepare the REMPs can be found here.

The need to standardize the development and decision-making process as well as the necessary content of the REMPs is being intensively discussed. Germany, in cooperation with the Netherlands and the Pew Charitable Trust, has organized an international workshop on the topic in November 2019.

Germany and the Netherlands cooperated and submitted two documents regarding the standardization of the decision-making process and the necessary contents of REMPs to the ISA Council in spring 2020.

 Thereupon, the Council instructed the LTC to further develop the guidance drafted by the Secretariat, considering these documents (see ISBA/26/C/10). This request has not yet been fulfilled.

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 Regional Environmental Management Plans (REMPs)  ISA Council