ISA model could be extended to protecting ocean biodiversity through a new agreement
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Eventually, the seabed regime may also be called on to make adjustments thrust upon it by states acting outside the authority. If the authority gains the trust of its members as an effective manager and steward of deep ocean minerals, it is possible that states may negotiate to add other deep ocean issues to the responsibilities assigned to the authority by UNCLOS and the 1994 Agreement. The subject of the management, protection and exploitation of the biodiversity of life on the deep ocean floor has gained some attention.36 While there is only limited knowledge of the scope or the fraglity of the marine life of the seabed, there have been discussions of the potential commercial value of this resource.37 The authority, charged with protecting the marine environment, must consider effects on marine life of mineral exploration and exploitation. It is conceivable that a new agreement could extend the role of the authority to the management, exploitation and protection of deep seabed biodiversity.
The negotiations and compromises that led to the development of UNCLOS were a watershed for the development of international law and could serve as a model for the development of similar regimes for the governance of other global commons, including outer space, cyberspace, and the genetic pool.