Royal Society of NSW News & Events

Royal Society of NSW News & Events

Ideas@theHouse: October 2024

Governor of NSW Crest-Silver and Gold-2020Ideas@theHouse

presented by

Her Excellency the Honourable
Margaret Beazley AC KC, Governor of NSW

Timothy Stephens
The Big Thaw: Who Governs Antarctica’s Ice?

Professor Tim Stephens FAAL
Professor of International Law
University of Sydney Law School

Date: Thursday, 31 October 2024, 6.30 – 8.00 pm AEST
Venue: Face-to-face (by invitation for Society members) and live streaming from Government House Sydney
Registration: Society members will receive an invitation to register for a face-to-face place.  No registration is required for the live stream (link to follow)
Entry: No charge
All are welcome to the live stream

Summary: Despite Antarctica’s isolation, humanity’s signature is inscribed deeply there, from the ozone hole etched in the southern sky to the cleaving of the ice shelves into the Southern Ocean. The Antarctic Treaty sought to quarantine Antarctica from the nuclear technologies that heralded the advent of the Anthropocene, and the Antarctic Treaty System is imbued with a romantic environmental ideal of Antarctica as a pristine wilderness that only needs to be left alone to be protected. But it is the global forces let loose by human hands, most notably climate change, that are now transforming Antarctica rather than any activities on the continent itself. What does all this mean for our imaginings of Antarctic governance? What might an Antarctic Treaty System that effectively understands and responds to the challenges of the climate crisis look like?

Dr Tim Stephens is a Professor of International Law at the University of Sydney Law School. He teaches and researches in public international law, with his published work focussing on the international law of the sea, international environmental law and international dispute settlement.

Tim is an author or editor of 11 books. His major publications include The International Law of the Sea (Hart/Bloomsbury, 2010, 2016, 2023) co-authored with Donald R Rothwell, and International Courts and Environmental Protection (Cambridge University Press, 2009).

He has been appointed, on the nomination of the Australian Government, to the List of Arbitrators under the Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty, and to the List of Experts under the South Pacific Regional Fisheries Management Organisation. He served as President of the Australian and New Zealand Society of International Law from 2015 to 2019.

Tim holds a PhD in law from the University of Sydney, an M.Phil in geography from the University of Cambridge, and BA and LLB degrees (both with Honours) from the University of Sydney. He is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law.

Site by
Privacy policy |  Links to other societies
Editor Login
Disclaimer: Positions expressed on this website by authors of publications and
event presenters do not necessarily reflect those of the Society.
The Royal Society of New South Wales acknowledges the traditional custodians
of the lands on which we live and work, and we pay our respects to Elders past and present.
All rights reserved. Copyright © The Royal Society of NSW.
ABN: 76 470 896 415


We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). You can decide for yourself whether you want to allow cookies or not. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site.