The Metals Company and the International Seabed Authority slammed over Environmental Impact Statement

Date: March 9, 2022


The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for The Metals Company (TMC’s) deep-sea mining test by its Nauruan subsidiary, Nauru Ocean Resources Inc. (NORI), received over 600  comments across a range of critical issues. Government and non-government organisations  declared it sub-standard and not fit for purpose as a risk management tool. 

“The EIS has supposedly been  revised in light of significant concerns raised. But the document was made available only  one working day ahead of the consultation session held yesterday. This made it impossible  to assess the extent to which its 770 pages actually rectify the deficiencies of the previous  draft. The fact that the EIS had to be expanded by 220 pages in response to stakeholder  submissions points to TMC’s unprofessional approach.” 

Dr Catherine Coumans, MiningWatch Canada (MWC)

“The ridiculously short  timeframe provided for stakeholders to digest the revised EIS, indicates that TMC and the  Government of Nauru are not seeking meaningful engagement. Perhaps the International  Seabed Authority (ISA) has already approved this EIS, given it was submitted to them last  October? In addition, the virtual format for the consultation webinar was extremely limited,  confirming the impression that it was nothing more than a box-ticking exercise. “ 

Maureen Penjueli of the Pacific Blue Line Campaign (PBL)

Ms Penjueli continued, “We also question whether national consultations have been held in  Nauru. Has the revised EIS been presented to the most important stakeholders, the  Nauruan people?“ 

“The lack of meaningful participation and transparency is  consistent with TMC’s, and apparently the ISA’s agenda: to pilot deep sea mining instead of  conducting the research needed to understand the wide range of impacts of commercial  mining. This ignores the precautionary approach recommended by the global community  including over 700 scientists; national government and non-government members of the  IUCN; financial institutions, global businesses, international fisheries bodies, and civil  society.“

Dr. Helen Rosenbaum

Dr. Rosenbaum continued, “Scientists advise that coordinated independent research is  needed for at least another seven years before test-mining by companies with a vested  interest is appropriate. TMC, the Republic of Nauru and the ISA are being reckless – presumably driven by TMC’s dismal share prices. ” 

Maureen Penjueli concluded, “TMC’s EIS is an important test that will indicate whether the  ISA is fit for purpose as the international DSM regulatory authority. The world is watching,  especially due to the contentious nature of the TMC/NORI enterprise. Not only is it  associated with triggering the two year rule, but TMC currently faces shareholder litigations challenging the company’s integrity.” 

For more information 


Maureen Penjueli, Pacific Blue Line Campaign +679 7777077  


Dr. Helen Rosenbaum, Deep Sea Mining Campaign +61 413 201 793 


Dr. Catherine Coumans, MiningWatch Canada +1 613 256 8331

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