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Petroleum Conservation: Do International Framework Agreements for the Development of Transboundary Hydrocarbon Resources effectively apply conservation principles?

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posted on 05.12.2016, 14:58 by Carlos Canales
The relationship between petroleum conservation and sustainable development is unquestionable. International Framework Agreements for the development of transboundary hydrocarbon resources play a fundamental role in strengthening petroleum conservation principles. So far the development of transboundary hydrocarbon resources has been mainly about drawing squares and triangles, with conservation as a secondary objective. This thesis examines the role of petroleum conservation in six recent framework agreements. The study is built around the application of conservation principles for the development of offshore transboundary hydrocarbon resources. The work attempts to identify, analyse and synthesise the legal content regarding petroleum conservation principles in recent framework agreements, and based upon this suggest how future international instruments should be developed. More than half of known petroleum reservoirs lie either across defined boundaries lines or in contested areas. Their development is becoming necessary to supplement current production which largely comes from mature basins. The need to further incorporate petroleum conservation measures for the benefit of everyone is therefore more apparent than ever. The ancient choice between cooperation and conflict for developing shared resources must now be driven by conservation principles. The consolidation of sustainable development under international law provides a unique opportunity to see transboundary hydrocarbon resources with fresh eyes, with a more cosmopolitan approach in favour of nature and humanity as a whole. Petroleum conservation should not be left out of the broader international discussions on sustainability. Nations wealth is intertwined with shared geology, peoples and nature.



Shaw, Malcolm; Kaime, Thoko

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School of Law

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University of Leicester

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