25 U.N.B.L.J. 79 (1976)
The Right of Intervention of Coastal States on the High Seas in Cases of Pollution Casualites

handle is hein.journals/unblj25 and id is 81 raw text is: THE RIGHT OF INTERVENTION OF
Claude C. Emanuelli*
In certain circumstances the state cannot await the arrival of a danger to
its security within its own territorial jurisdiction, but must take measures to
prevent that danger from materializing while still outside its territorial
jurisdiction. In this case the state may claim a measure of protective
jurisdiction and use force in the exercise of that jurisdiction beyond the
limits of state territory.'
The question of the existence of a right of intervention of coastal
States on the high seas following pollution casualties' arose in rela-
tion to the Torrey Canyon incident in March 1967.
The Torrey Canyon3 was a Liberian tanker which ran aground
on the Seven Stones Reef,4 12 miles off the British coast, i.e. on the
high seas,' causing major pollution damage to the British and French
coastlines and related interests.'
In order to minimize any further pollution, the British govern-
ment first attempted to rescue the tanker; but, following the failure
of attempts at salvage it was decided to bomb the wreck in order to
set it afire. At that time, the decision of the British government was a
* Assistant Professor of Law at the University of New Brunswick, Lic. Droit,
LL.M., D.J.
I D.W. Bowett, Self-Defence In International Law (1958), p. 66.
2  The first international efforts to combat sea pollution go back to the League of
Nations and the Washington Conference of 1926. Nevertheless, the problem of
pollution did not become a matter of public concern and of international an-
tagonism until it was dealt with by the Inter-governmental Maritime Consultative
Organization (IMCO) after World War 11.
3  It was carrying most modern navigational aids and was classed 100 A-I, the
highest standard by Lloyd's Register of Shipping. The Liberian board of investiga-
tion found that the stranding was entirely due to the negligence of the master of the
ship. See E.D. Brown, The Lessons of the Torrey Canyon (1969) 21 Current Legal
Problems, p. 113, at p. 114.
4  Navigational hazard between the Isles of Scilly and Land's End.
5  The United Kindgom has made no claim in relation to the establishment of a con-
tiguous zone and could not refer to the provisions of Article 24(1) of the Geneva
Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone under which a coastal
State is given the control necessary to prevent infringement of its sanitary regula-
tions within its territory or territorial sea, see text in 1958, 52 American Journal
of International Law, p. 834.
6 60,000 tons of oil were released causing damage estimated to $18 million.

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