The impact of sea level rise on the law of the sea and the protection of China＇s rights and interests in South China Sea
＂陆地统治海洋＂及＂基线决定国家管辖海域范围＂是目前国际海洋法的两大基本原则,然海平面上升不仅可使岛屿向岩礁甚至低潮高地退化,也会致使低海拔国家的沿海基线具有不确定性,引发了人们对于其可能导致的国家管辖海域范围外部界限及相邻或相向国家海域划界协议变化的担忧。由于南海独特的地理环境、复杂的领域主权纠纷以及尚未公布南沙群岛基线等特征,在海平面上升所引发的相关海洋法问题上,保护中国南海权益显得尤为迫切。中国应当通过促进包括条约法和习惯法在内的海洋法发展以维护南海权益,探索这一问题的解决方式不仅有利于维护中国的南海权益,也将助力于国际法治发展。＂The land dominates the sea＂and＂baselines determine the boundary of sea areas under national jurisdiction＂are two of the basic principles under the international law of the sea. The rise in sea level due to climate change not only downgrades an island to a rock/reef or even to a low-tide elevation,but also leads to uncertainty on the coastal baselines of low-lying countries. This has raised concerns about the possible changes in the outer limits of sea areas under national jurisdiction or in the maritime delimitation agreements between States with opposite or adjacent coasts. The law-of-the-sea issues caused by sea level rise have become pressing in South China Sea because of its particular geological environment,the complicated disputes over territorial sovereignty and unpublished baselines in Nansha Islands et al. China should promote the development of the law of the sea,including treaties and customary law,with a view to safeguarding its SCS rights and interests. Seeking for solutions to these issues would not only be conducive to the protection of China＇s SCS rights and interests,but also to the development of international rule of law.