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"Law of the Sea in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean:
Unresolved Issues and Challenges"
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Conference Agenda
Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies
Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
March 22 - 24, 2007
3:30 – 5:30 PM

Side-meeting on Improving U.S./Mexico Cooperation in Commercializing Ultra-Deepwater Hydrocarbon Resources in the Gulf of Mexico (by invitation)

6:15 PM Transportation from Omni-Marina Hotel to Town Club
(Meet in Hotel Lobby)
6:30 – 8:30 PM Welcome Reception for all Conference Participants – Corpus Chrisi Town Club
8:30 PM Transportation from Town Club to Omni-Marina Hotel
7:00 AM Transportation from Omni-Marina Hotel to Harte Research Institute
(Meet in Hotel Lobby)
7:30 – 8:00 AM

Continental Breakfast
Harte Research Institute Conference Center Room 127

8:00 - 8:30 AM Welcoming Remarks
Dr. John Tunnell, Associate Director, Harte Research Institute
Prof. Harry Scheiber, Co-Director Law of the Sea Institute
8:30 – 10:00 AM

First Panel - Emerging Energy Issues in the Gulf of Mexico

The Gulf of Mexico is one of the world’s most important oil and gas provinces. As many shallow-water fields are being depleted, important new discoveries are occurring in the deepest portions of the Gulf. In this panel, we look at these trends from the perspectives of the United States, Mexico and Cuba. We will also examine why UNCLOS is important to the continued development of these deepwater resources.

Mr. Paul Kelly
Sr. Vice President
Rowan Offshore
Member U.S.
Commission on Ocean

Mr. Richie Baud
Deputy Regional
Office of
Production & Dev.,
MMS Gulf of
Mexico OCS Region

Mr. Jorge Piñon
Sr. Research
Institute for Cuban
and Cuban-American
University of Miami

Ms. Aurora
Manager of
Contracts of the
Vice Presidency of
New Ventures
Pemex Exploración y

Mr. Antonio de la
Garza Xavier
Legal Advisor for
Pemex Exploración y

10:00 – 10:15 AM Mid-morning break
10:15 – 12:00 PM

Second Panel - Western Gap and Transboundary Resources in the Ultra-Deepwaters of the Gulf of Mexico

On June 9, 2000, the United States and Mexico agreed to divide the Western Gap, a region that lies beyond the 200 mile limits of either nation. Treaty negotiations were premised on the assertion by both nations that the seabed and subsoil met the legal requirements described in Article 76 of UNCLOS. In recent years, there have been a number of major oil discoveries near the Western Gap, along the U.S.-Mexico maritime boundary. This panel explores the history of this little known region and begins the important task of examining the legal and political
impediments to the efficient development and conservation of transboundary hydrocarbons in the deepest portions of the Gulf.

Prof. Richard
Endowed Chair
Harte Research

Dr. Robert Smith
U.S. Department of
State (retired)

Prof. Ted
Faculty of Law
University of

Mr. Francisco
General Counsel’s
Exxon Mobil Corp.

12:15 – 1:45 PM

Welcoming Remarks: Dr. Flavius Killebrew, President Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
Introduction of Speaker: Mr. Paul Kelly, Member U.S. Commission on Ocean Policy
Keynote Speaker: The Honorable Leon Panetta, Co-Chair Joint Ocean Commission Initiative

University Center, Lone Star Ballroom

2:00 – 3:30 PM

Third Panel - Unresolved Maritime Boundary Problems in the Caribbean

This panel will examine the principles that have emerged from the resolved boundary disputes in the Caribbean and the competing positions that have been taken on those that remain unresolved. Quite a few boundaries have been resolved through negotiations, one dispute (between Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago) has recently been resolved by an arbitral panel, the dispute between Suriname and Guyana remains pending, several (involving Nicaragua and its neighbors) have been presented to the International Court of Justice, and others are still in the discussion stage. Panelists involved in some of these disputes will provide background and analysis for the disputes.

Judge Tullio Treves
Judge, International
Law of the Sea

Prof. Jon Van Dyke
University of Hawaii
School of Law

Mr. Chris Carleton
Head, Law of the
Sea Division
UK Hydrographic

Mr. Mark Feldman
Garvey Schubert

Prof. Seokwoo
Professor of
International Law
College of Law
Inha University,

3:30 – 3:45 PM Mid-afternoon break
3:45- 5:15 PM

Fourth Panel – Maritime Transportation of Hazardous Materials

This panel will examine the environmental challenges resulting from the shipments of hazardous materials through the Caribbean and through the Panama Canal. The panelists will examine the international and regional treaties governing such transports and the response of regional organizations such as CARICOM to such shipments. Panelists will discuss the unique environmental conditions of Caribbean communities and the regional environmental bodies formed to protect their fragile resources.

Prof. Jon Van Dyke
University of Hawaii
School of Law

Capt. Lincoln Stroh
Deputy Sector Commander
U.S. Coast Guard

Prof. Luis Rodriguez-
School of Law
University of Puerto Rico

Prof. Daniel Suman
Rosenstiel School of Marine
& Atmospheric Science
University of Miami

5:15 PM

Transportation from Harte Research Institute to Omni-Marina Hotel

7:00 PM

Transportation from Omni-Marina Hotel to Art Museum of South Texas
(Meet in Hotel Lobby)

7:00 - 9:00 PM

Reception & Dinner – Speaker: Judge Tullio Treves
Art Museum of South Texas

9:00 PM

Transportation from Art Museum of South Texas to Omni-Marina Hotel

7:30 AM

Transportation from Omni-Marina to Harte Research Institute
(Meet in Hotel Lobby)

8:00 - 8:30 AM

Continental Breakfast
Harte Research Institute Conference Center Room 127

8:30 – 10:00 AM

Fifth Panel Fisheries Issues

One of the most urgent issues facing us today in regard to the world’s ocean resources to is a dramatic decline of fish stocks and the persistent weakness of regulatory regimes to control against threatened depletions. The papers on this panel will examine regional and global issues in fisheries management, including the problems of regional coordination, fisheries management in coastal waters of the EEZ, and new initiatives being taken globally under the terms of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and its implementation through the FAO and international management organizations organized both bilaterally and regionally.

Prof. Harry Scheiber
University of California
at Berkeley School of
Law, Co-Director Law
of the Sea Institute

Prof. Mario Aguilar
Embassy of Mexico
Washington D.C.

Prof. Donna
College of Law
Florida State

Mr. Gene Proulx
Division NMFS

10:00 – 10:15 AM

Mid-morning break

10:15 – 10:45 AM Sylvia Earle - Comments & Observations
10:45 – 12:15 AM

Sixth Panel - Marine Biodiversity and Protected Areas

Like other areas of the world's oceans, large portions of the Gulf of Mexico have been seriously impacted by a combination of natural and anthropogenic stresses. Destruction of coastal and ocean habitats, depleted fish stocks, introduction of invasive species, degraded water quality and other problems have seriously affected ocean health and biodiversity. This panel will explore strategies aimed at protecting biodiversity including innovative programs that emphasize "hotspots" and set aside intact ocean wilderness as protected areas.

Ms. Kristina Gjerde
IUCN Global Marine

Ms. Lisa Speer
Water and Oceans
National Resources
Defense Council

Mr. Warner Chabot
Vice President
Regional Operations
The Ocean

Dr. Elliott Norse
Biology Institute

12:30 – 1:30 PM Lunch
Harte Research Institute Foyer
1:30 – 3:00 PM

Seventh Panel - Ecosystem-based Management in Enclosed and Semi-Enclosed Seas

Traditionally, coastal and ocean areas have been managed and governed at isolated levels with little cooperation or coordination across local, state, tribal, federal or international boundaries. In recent years, this traditional approach has been rejected in favor of ecosystem-based management which considers the cumulative impacts on the entire ecosystem. In this panel we focus on cooperative and adaptive management strategies to provide a foundation to advance a more effective ecosystem-based approach to coastal and ocean policy.

Mr. John Briscoe
Briscoe Ivester &
Bazel, LLP

Mr. Billy Causey
Regional Director
Southeast Atlantic
Gulf of Mexico and
Caribbean Region
National Marine
Sanctuary Program

Mr. Arlo Hemphill
Conservation Fellow
Deep Search

Mr. Chris Dorsett
Gulf of Mexico Fish
The Ocean

3:15 - 4:00 PM Transportation from Harte Research Institute to Welder Wildlife Refuge
4:00 - 7:45 PM Reception, Tours & Barbecue Dinner
Welder Wildlife Refuge
8:00 - 9:00 PM Transportation from Welder Wildlife Refuge to Omni-Marina Hotel