The Future of the Deep Sea: Undiscovered Wonders at Risk

Date: December 15, 2017

Source: Marine Conservation Institute 
Author: Kelly Martin

You’ve probably heard the saying that we know less about the deep ocean than we do about the surface of the moon. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, we have explored less than 5% of the ocean to date, so the saying is pretty accurate. However, as technology improves and scientists are able to learn more about the deep, they begin to more clearly understand its ecological value.

Unfortunately, improved technology is also allowing humans to exploit deep ocean resources in ways that could be extremely damaging. Last month, Japan became the first country to successfully mine the deep sea on a large scale. A company called Nautilus Minerals is also now licensed to mine Papua New Guinea’s seafloor, with extraction set to begin in 2019. These developments could usher in a new era of deep-sea exploitation.

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