Marine fishing nets

Daniel Owen specialises in the law that governs our use of the world’s seas and oceans.

Much of his practice falls under three broad headings, namely marine planning and licensing; fisheries management; and marine protected areas.  Under each of these headings, he deals with international law, European Union law and United Kingdom law.  Laws, or sources of law, that Daniel deals with as part of his practice include the following:

International law:

  • the international law of the sea, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
  • global marine institutions, including the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the International Seabed Authority (ISA)
  • regional marine institutions, including regional seas organisations and regional fisheries management organisations (RFMOs)

European Union law:

  • the Common Fisheries Policy
  • Habitats Directive  (92/43/EEC, as amended)
  • Birds Directive  (2009/147/EC, as amended)
  • Marine Strategy Framework Directive  (2008/56/EC)
  • Water Framework Directive  (2000/60/EC, as amended)
  • EIA Directive  (2011/92/EU, as amended)
  • SEA Directive  (2001/42/EC)
  • Environmental Liability Directive  (2004/35/EC, as amended)

United Kingdom law:

  • Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009 and other relevant Acts of Parliament
  • associated statutory instruments
  • statutory instruments transposing EU Directives
  • instruments relating to UK overseas territories and Crown dependencies

Daniel’s practice is mainly advisory and includes both contentious and non-contentious work.

His clients include companies, environmental non-governmental organisations (NGOs), public bodies and intergovernmental organisations.  He has advised clients on the legal aspects of a wide variety of sea uses, including the following:

  • bioprospecting
  • cable laying
  • fisheries, both commercial and recreational
  • military activities
  • mineral and oil and gas exploration and exploitation
  • natural gas storage
  • nature conservation
  • renewable energy generation
  • scientific research
  • shipping

Recent matters

Some of the matters on which Daniel Owen has assisted clients recently include the following:

Cable laying.  Providing legal advice on the international law regime applicable to the laying of cables on the legal continental shelf.

Fishing effort.  Providing legal services in respect of one of the fishing effort regimes established under the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy.

ITLOS Advisory Opinion on fisheries.  Providing legal services in connection with ITLOS Case No.21, and participating at a three-day workshop in Dakar, Senegal.

Marine Conservation Zones.  Providing legal advice in respect of a potential Marine Conservation Zone under the UK’s Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009.

Marine Natura 2000 sites. Providing legal advice on the implementation of the site protection provisions of the EU Habitats and Birds Directives in the marine environment.

Marine Strategy Framework Directive.  Tracking the implementation of this EU Directive in respect of some of the ‘Descriptors’ listed in the Directive’s Annex I.


Daniel provides training seminars on marine law.
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What the Directories say

‘A first-rate specialist in fisheries and marine law’
The Legal 500, 2014 edition

‘An expert in international law of the sea matters’
The Legal 500, 2015 edition