Marine Policy: An Introduction to Governance and International Law of the Oceans, 2nd Edition (e-Book) book cover

Marine Policy

An Introduction to Governance and International Law of the Oceans, 2nd Edition

By Mark Zacharias, Jeff Ardron


322 pages | 49 B/W Illus.

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This book provides readers with a foundation in policy development and analysis, describing how policy, including legal mechanisms, are applied to the marine environment. It presents a systematic treatment of all aspects of marine policy, including climate change, energy, environmental protection, fisheries, mining and transportation.

The health of marine environments worldwide is steadily declining, and these trends have been widely reported. Marine Policy summarizes the importance of the ocean governance nexus, discussing current and anticipated challenges facing marine ecosystems, human activities, and efforts to address these threats. This new, fully revised edition has been updated throughout, including content to reflect the recent advances in ocean management and international law. Chapters on shipping, energy/mining and integrated approaches to ocean management have been significantly reworked, plus completely new chapters on the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, and the impacts of climate change have been added. Pedagogical features for students are included throughout.

Aligned with current course offerings, this book is an ideal introduction for undergraduates and graduate students taking marine affairs, science and policy courses.


"It is increasingly recognized that our world is now at a critical turning point. With ever increasing population our impact on the natural environment is at such a scale that we are now altering not just our immediate surroundings but also the broader associated chemical and physical processes for life. The ocean is no exception. How healthy we keep the ocean reflects on our health and well-being as it is all inter-connected. If we are to turn the corner towards a more sustainable future the ocean must be part of that – centre stage. Not only do we need to understand what we have done to the ocean, but also what tools are available to retain and recover its health, and how they may work best together. This newly updated book is a fundamental part of that process, as it shows us how the various approaches to ocean governance can be integrated to improve social, economic, and environmental outcomes. It should be essential reading for all those of us who strive to better manage and protect our home - planet ocean." - Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair, IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas

"Given the ever-increasing impacts of human activities on the marine environment, there is a commensurate growing need for effective international and regional agreements to help ensure the protection of our seas and oceans. Mark Zacharias and Jeff Ardron draw upon their dual experience within government and academia to help the reader understand the types of marine policies that actually influence ocean-related developments, activities and outcomes. Citing examples from around the world, this book provides a timely and useful perspective on the challenges facing effective marine policy, including the complexities of climate change, along with new and emerging issues such as ocean energy and deep-sea mining." - Jon C. Day, James Cook University, Australia and formerly a Director with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority

Table of Contents

1. An Introduction to the World Ocean

2. A Brief Introduction to the Marine Environment

3. An Introduction to International Law and International Marine Law

4. The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and related agreements

5. An Introduction to Policy and Policy Development

6. Marine Environmental Protection Policy

7. Addressing Climate Change and its Impacts on the World Ocean

8. International Fisheries Policy

9. Marine Transportation and Safety Policy

10. International Law and Policy of the Polar Oceans

11. International Law and Policy related to Offshore Energy and Mining

12. Integrated Approaches to Ocean Management


About the Authors

Mark Zacharias is the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy with the province of British Columbia, Canada. He is also Adjunct Professor at the University of British Columbia Fisheries Centre and Associate Adjunct Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Victoria. He is the co-author of the book Marine Conservation Ecology (Earthscan, 2011).

Jeff Ardron is an Adviser on Marine Governance for the Commonwealth Secretariat, based in London, UK. He leads the Commonwealth Blue Charter, which was adopted by all 53 Commonwealth countries in 2018. With more than 25 years’ experience in marine planning and conservation, he has worked in governmental and non-governmental sectors, as well as in research and academia. He has more than 60 peer-reviewed publications and serves on various boards and committees of marine-focused organizations.

About the Series

Earthscan Oceans

Earthscan Oceans

This series includes a wide range of inter-disciplinary approaches to oceans and the marine environment, integrating perspectives from both social and natural sciences. It includes research monographs, textbooks and titles aimed at professionals, NGOs and policy-makers. Authors or editors of potential new titles should contact Hannah Ferguson, Editor ([email protected]).

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / Environmental
NATURE / Ecology
NATURE / Ecosystems & Habitats / Oceans & Seas
POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / Treaties
SCIENCE / Environmental Science
SCIENCE / Life Sciences / Biology / Marine Biology
SCIENCE / Earth Sciences / Oceanography
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Fisheries & Aquaculture