Delimitation of the continental shelf
Collection and interpretation of data to document claims to the continental shelf outside the 200-nautical-mile limit within the realm.
The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea provides coastal states with the opportunity to make claims for subsurface and seabed resources outside the 200-nautical-mile limit and, thus, gain access to possible subsurface or seabed resources. Any claims have to be documented, primarily with data on sea depths and sediment thickness.
GEUS’ activities in brief
In 2004, the Kingdom of Denmark ratified the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, which opens for claims to the seabed outside the 200-nautical-mile limit. Work to delineate Denmark's continental shelf is taking place under the Continental Shelf Project, which is being funded by the Ministry of Higher Education and Science, with contributions from the Faroese Government. Work is being carried out as a collaboration between GEUS and other institutions from Denmark, the Faroe Islands and Greenland.
GEUS has been collecting and interpreting data from the five areas in play since 2003. These areas include an area in the Arctic Ocean, two off South Greenland and North-East Greenland, respectively, and two areas north-east and south-west of the Faroe Islands.
GEUS' work has primarily included collecting, processing and interpreting seismic and bathymetric data collected from ship or the sea ice. However, shallow wells into the seabed have also been drilled to document the geological conditions.
For a description of the activities see the Continental Shelf Project website