Protecting Antarctica’s coastal blue carbon: a case for international cooperation

Brendan Gogarty, Narissa Bax, David KA Barnes, Chester J. Sands, Jeffrey McGee, Marcus G. Haward, Maria Lund Paulsen, Bernabé Moreno, Camille Moreau, Christoph Held, Rachel Downey

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


As sea-ice around Antarctica’s coastlines retracts, a massive ‘blue carbon’ area is emerging to replace it. This is a growing resource that is predicted to become the world’s largest natural carbon sequestration area. Given the loss of carbon sinks elsewhere and the existential threat of unabated climate change, this is an incredibly important global good that must be protected and promoted. In this chapter, we explore the legal and diplomatic barriers to that protection and posit potential solutions. In particular, we suggest vertical institutional linkage between the Antarctic Treaty System and the United Nations climate regimes as a way of incentivizing the establishment of global cooperative marine protected areas around Antarctica’s coasts.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch Handbook on Climate Change, Oceans and Coasts
EditorsJan McDonald, Jeffrey McGee, Richard Barnes
Place of PublicationCheltenham UK
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9781788112239
ISBN (Print)9781788112222
Publication statusPublished - 2020
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameResearch Handbooks in Climate Law series

Cite this