Islands awash amidst rising seas: Sea level rise and insular status under the law of the sea
This article considers the potential impacts of sea level rise on maritime zones with particular reference to impacts on islands. It considers the sea level rise predictions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change; it outlines the existing legal framework for coastal baselines and insular features established by the 1982 Law of the Sea Convention. It highlights the work of the International Law Association Committee on International Law and Sea Level Rise, which in its 2018 report had identified the development of a body of State practice among the States and Territories of the South Pacific regarding the maintenance of existing maritime zone claims in the face of sea level rise. That practice is considered, together with the implications of the 2016 Tribunal Award on the South China Sea case on maritime zone claims based on islands.