Dr. John T. Oliver has published a new paper describing the history and benifits of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. He goes into great detail regarding why now is the time for the U.S. to ratify this law.
Oliver begins by presenting the history of the Law of the Sea, beginning with it's first negotiations from 1973-1982. He also lays out the basic things that the convention covers such as rights and obligations of coastal states, scientific research, and protection of the marine environment. 157 states have signed the convention yet the US has not. At one point in 1994 the US came close to ratifying the Law of the Sea after President Reagan identified many provisions that needed to be changed. However the Senate has never had a full vote on the convention.
Oliver then goes on to discuss the many ways that the Law of Sea benefits the U.S. One of the biggest is National Security. This law would provide resources necessary for fighting the global war on terrorism and protecting our military power overseas. As this is one of the most important issues for the United States it is surprising that this law has not been ratified. Oliver also discusses environmental and economic advantages as well as the war on drugs. The Law of the Sea would give the US territorial claims to the 200 nautical miles on its coast which would help the control of drug trafficking.