What are the alternatives to deep-sea mining?

Date: June 25, 2021

Deep-sea mining is out of step with the direction the world is taking as leaders across both public and private sectors seek nature-based solutions to the climate and biodiversity crises. Set within a circular economic model, this approach is in line with the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12 – to ensure responsible consumption and production – and the UN’s designated decades of ocean science and habitat restoration.

Deep-sea mining prospectors claim we have no choice but to open the ocean to mining in order to power the green shift. This is because the minerals they are targeting – manganese, cobalt and nickel – are used to build batteries for renewable technologies. However, alternatives to deep-sea mining are within reach providing we continue to invest in three main areas: innovation in battery technology; increased reuse and recycling capacities; and the continued extraction of metals from terrestrial sources under greatly improved environmental and social governance (ESG) frameworks. As DeepGreen subsidiary, Tonga Offshore Minerals Ltd, states: “It is true that there are enough metal-bearing deposits on land to meet the needs of the clean energy transition”.

Find out more about why we don’t need this destructive industry here.

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