Overfishing the Atlantic Ocean is leading to the decimation of a number of species, and vast plastic wastes are creating trash vortexes while the extraction of offshore oil and gas has other real consequences to the Ocean’s inhabitants and nearby communities. In a seminar context, students will identify and research issues of common concern to the nations in the Atlantic Community – over-use and pollution of the Ocean through ocean dumping, overfishing, petroleum and gas extraction, alternative energy production, and transport of waste or other hazardous materials. We will examine how the issues occurring within the 100 mile-exclusive economic zone, the continental shelf and international waters impact the various Atlantic nations. Our review will begin with U.S. laws-the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act and the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Act-and move on to laws of other Atlantic nations and international treaties related to these issues. On the basis of this review, the course will consider the intersection between social, economic, and legal mechanisms. In several ports we will meet with officials to discuss their perspective on the issues in their country.
Field WorkCountry: Ghana
We will travel to Accra to meet with officials to discuss ocean issues in Ghana. Especially noteworthy are the potential issues arising from the use of Ghana's offshore area for the fishing industry and exploration and production of natural gas and oil resources from the Atlantic.