Workshop Marine and Coastal Resources: Risks and Law

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Location: Kunsthalle Kiel, Düsternbrooker Weg 1

Structure: 15 minutes talks plus 15 minutes discussion per talk

Hosts/moderation: Tina Treude, Alexander Proelß

Monday, October 6th

1. Exploitation of submarine gas hydrates: Pros and Cons


Gas hydrates are regarded as potential fossil fuels and today several nations including Japan and Korea, which do not possess fossil fuels such as oil or coal, are developing methods for the future exploitation of gas hydrates. However, a major part of marine gas hydrates are located at larger water depth and, therefore, the cost-benefit ratio of their exploitation might not be too favorable. Furthermore, utilization of gas hydrates may increase the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and cause slope failure at continental margins and subsequent coastal tsunamis. The injection of CO2 as a replacement for methane into gas hydrate layers may be one way out of the dilemma. The question is who can be held responsible (or being prevented from) the theoretical consequences of gas hydrate exploitation? Most of the gas hydrate reservoirs are located within national 200 mile zones – is it a national or an international responsibility? And who owns gas hydrates that are outside the national borders? What about the Arctic Ocean where melting sea ice uncovers more and more sea floor?

Resource potential of marine and terrestrial gas hydrates: the industry perspective (Warner Brückmann)
Methane hydrate production and CO2 sequestration (Matthias Haeckel)
Cost-benefit analysis of gas hydrate exploitation (Lena Döpke)
Risks: greenhouse effect and slope failure (Daniel Winkelmann)
Legality: Who “owns” gas hydrates, and under which conditions is it allowed to exploit them? (Monika Krivickaite)

Tuesday, October 7th

2. Human impact on coastal systems – how far can we go?


Many coasts worldwide are highly dynamic systems, which sensitively react on hazards form storms, tides, tsunamis and a rising sea-level. Enforced by human induced climate change, these hazards are expected to increase in future. They will have severe implications for the world’s coasts and hence can endanger coastal populations and infrastructure, as well as threatening many coastal ecosystems. These implications are exacerbated by the constant increase of people, living in the coastal zone as well as the growing demand on coastal resources. Beyond the assessment of the coastal population, resources and risks, questions arise regarding the response of the society to these topics. Lost land, damages in resources and infrastructure, compensation, protection and adaptation are important issues that need to be addressed.

Growing demand on mineral resources of coastal sites and arising risks (Klaus Schwarzer)
Assessing coastal vulnerability to sea-level rise – Issues arising from potential risks to population and resources (Athanasios Vafeidis)
Ecological and economical problems arising from constructional impact on estuarine systems (Kerstin Schrottke)
Offshore windfarms in the German Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) - the authority's perspective (Manfred Zeiler)
Natural and anthropogenic impact at the East Frisian coast - the last 1000 years and future perspectives (Alexander Bartholomä)

3. Transaction costs of fisheries policy


Many instruments of fisheries policy have been proposed (total allowable catch, gear restrictions, restrictions on the number of fishing days, subsidies on vessels, buyback subsidies, landing fees, individual tradable quotas, marine protected areas, temporary closures, and several more). Many of these instruments have been implemented in practice, with mixed success. One important question that has frequently been neglected in theory is how the different instruments compare with regard to their transaction costs. On the authority´s side, transaction costs include the effort needed for monitoring and enforcing compliance, and the costs involved in determining the right target levels of quotas, fees, sizes and location of marine protected areas. On the fishermen´s side, transaction costs include the costs of obtaining the licenses required, or reporting catches and effort. Against this background, the session will, inter alia, address the following questions: What are the overall transaction costs of different instruments? How do the benefits of different instruments compare to the transaction costs involved? Is there a general ranking of instruments?

Biological impacts of current quota systems (Rainer Froese)
Ecological and fishery consequences of closed areas as an instrument within the ecosystem approach to ocean management (Gerd Kraus)
Economics: Always pleading for market-based instruments? (Martin Quaas)
Legality: Alternative mechanisms for sustainable fisheries (Till Markus)