International Legal Regimes for Subsurface Activities

By Catherine Redgwell and Lavanya Rajamani
in The Law of Energy Underground: Understanding New Developments in Subsurface Production, Transmission, and Storage
Edited by Donald N. Zillman, Aileen McHarg, Adrian Bradbrook, and Lila Barrera-Hernandez
Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the international legal regime for subsurface uses and the extent to which existing treaty and customary law rules are capable of regulating new sub surface energy activities. This chapter begins with an overview of 'ownership' of the subsurface in international law, and then proceeds to examine how such activities either because of their location (e.g. subsurface) and/or effects (e.g. transboundary environmental effects) are subject to international legal rules.