Fragile Barriers: International Humanitarian Law in the Polar Regions

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Peace is a word often associated with the polar regions. This is on account of their
remoteness, climatic extremes and relative lack of human interference. However,
humanity has managed to reach these latitudes, and with it has come the potential
for armed conflict. Provisions in Polar Law provide fragile barriers to armed
conflict, which have already been breached in the past. International Humanitarian
Law then takes precedence. This paper argues that the latter is inadequately
developed to protect the pristine environments of the poles. A multilateral
conference could alter the anthropocentric design of the law of armed conflict to a
more ecocentric interpretation for the polar regions and similar environments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-118
Number of pages9
JournalThe University of Western Australia Law Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 4 Oct 2017


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