16 Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage
Edited By: David J Attard, Malgosia Fitzmaurice, Norman A Martínez Gutiérrez
- UNCLOS (UN Convention on the Law of the Sea) — Continental shelf — Exclusive economic zone — Coastal states — Territorial sea — Ships / vessels — Cultural property / heritage — Spacecraft, satellites, and space objects
The greatest museum of human civilization lies on the seabed. It has been estimated that, until the nineteenth century, almost 5 per cent of all seagoing ships were lost every year, be it from storms, incidents of navigation, or war events. In the last decades, the capacity of a few States and private entities to use advanced technological means to explore the seabed at increasing depths—for instance, the wreck of the Titanic was found in 1985 at 3,798 metres below sea level—not only allowed access to a huge amount of cultural heritage, but also entailed the risk...