Friday, June 6, 2003

WRITER/CONTACT: Dorinda Dallmeyer, 706/542-514, dorindad@uga.edu


ATHENS, Ga. - Earlier this week the independent Pew Oceans Commission issued a comprehensive report calling for immediate reforms of U.S. ocean laws and policies to restore ocean wildlife, protect ocean ecosystems and preserve the ecological, economic and social benefits the oceans provide.

On June 13 and 14, ocean law and policy experts from around the globe will meet at the University of Georgia's Dean Rusk Center-International, Comparative and Graduate Legal Studies for a conference titled "International Coastal Management: Tools for Successful Regional Partnerships and Initiatives." The conference will offer participants the opportunity for in-depth discussions on the impact of climate change and sea-level rise, sustainable fishing and other challenges of coastal management. The group will also examine case studies ranging from the Georgia coast to Panama and Australia as models for successful stewardship of coastal resources.

"By its very nature, the ocean requires us to think more holistically about its management, from the coastal zone to the high seas," said Dorinda Dallmeyer, associate director of the Rusk Center and conference organizer. "Everyone, whether a coastal resident or not, has a stake in the future of the oceans. This is an exciting opportunity to bring together law and policy experts from so many regions to learn about what works and what doesn't when it comes to exercising sustainable stewardship of 70 percent of the planet."

This is the first conference sponsored by the newly established national Sea Grant Law Center, based at the University of Mississippi School of Law. The purpose of the SGLC is to integrate efforts of ocean and coastal law research centers nationwide and provide outreach and advisory services to the National Sea Grant College Program and its constituents. As a founding collaborating partner in the SGLC, the Rusk Center's staff and students contribute research on international law developments as they affect coastal and marine resource management. In addition to the Dean Rusk Center and the University of Mississippi, SGLC collaborating institutions include the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science at the University of Miami, the Ocean and Coastal Law Library at the University of Oregon and the Nova Southeastern Law Center.

For the conference agenda or registration details, visit SGLC's Web site at www.olemiss.edu/orgs/SGLC.