Deep sea news (19 December – 9 January)

Date: January 9, 2023

Check out the top stories from the deep, taken from coverage between 19 December 2022 – 9 January 2023

The deep sea is an unexpected, but at-risk, trove of biodiversity

Source: Ars Technica

Author: Doug Johnson

The UN biodiversity conference reminds us how little we know of the deep ocean.

COP15 saw an increased awareness of deep-sea biodiversity. Julia Sigwart, a researcher at the Senckenberg Research Institute in Germany discusses with Ars the policy brief on deep-sea biodiversity protection that was presented. Understanding the challenges and benefits of mapping deep-sea biodiversity is crucial to protecting this “trove of biodiversity”.

Column | The Metals Company: Dilution in action as founders file to sell their shares in the seabed miner

Source: Baird Maritime

Author: Hieronymus Bosch

What did we spy on the last trading day before Christmas 2022? Not Santa sliding down a chimney, but shares in a leading subsea mining company sliding hard to a record low on December 23.

In an attempt to raise funds, The Metals Company entered an ‘At the Market’ arrangement – selling a portion of shares at a ‘cut price’ of US$0.60. Over the Christmas period value continued to ‘ping-pong’ and had settled at $US0.77 on December 30th. Baird Maritime questions whether The Metals Company will indeed survive to continue trading by July 2023 – the date targeted by the International Seabed Authority for finalisation of the Exploitation Code.

España entra en el Consejo de ISA, donde pedirá retrasar la minería submarina

Source: EFE: Verde

Author: Guy Standing

Sources from the Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (Miteco) have told EFE: Verde that Spain ‘will take advantage of its position in the ISA Council to defend “strict compliance” with the precautionary principle and demand a “preventive pause” in the mining exploitation of the seabed’.

Time is running out for countries to agree rules on deep-sea mining

Source: NewScientist

Author: Madeleine Cuff

If governments don’t meet a July 2023 deadline to draw up regulations governing deep-sea mining, companies may start exploiting the seabed without legal restrictions.

Watch: Path to Net-Zero: How are mining companies tracking?

Source: S&P Global

Miners are seeking reliable partners to support the costly renewable energy that will play a critical role in their net-zero plans. Under pressure from investors, governments and their own customers, 20 of the world’s 30 largest mining companies by market capitalization have set net-zero or carbon neutrality goals, with 2050 as the most common target year for emissions cuts.

S&P Global Market intelligence unpack which mining companies are on track with emission reduction targets and why there are huge monetary incentives for doing so. Renewable energy developments mean that a move away from fossil fuels also means a move away from destructive extraction techniques on land and on seabeds.

Democratizing the deep sea: Q&A with Ocean Discovery League’s Katy Croff Bell

Source: Mongabay

Author: Abhishyant Kidangoor

Deep sea exploration is expensive and, as a result, very exclusive,” Bell, a deep-sea explorer, told Mongabay in a video interview. “Our goal is to broaden access to these kinds of tools.”

A new device dubbed the ‘Maka Niu‘ is revolutionising the barriers to deep-sea research. Built using ‘off the shelf hardware’ Katy Croff Bell, in partnership with the Ocean Discovery League, has created a ‘tube-like’ device that can act as both a camera and a sensor for deep sea habitats. The hope is that this device will allow allow far more people to observe and understand the wonders of the deep.

VIDEO: Deep sea cameras capture new species

Source: ABC News

The CSIRO’s deep sea cameras capture new species off the West Australian coast.

ABC present some amazing footage of the planet’s least explored area. Ground breaking technology can be seen in action as specimens are collected and observed off the coast of Western Australia.

Deep sea creatures: the amazing under-explored part of the world

Source: Interesting Engineering

Just like the distant galaxies, the deep seas continue to bring us wonder and awe.

Interesting Engineering covers some of the key terminology, scientific interest and “fascinating” creatures that make up the deep sea. Deep-sea viperfish, Sea Spiders, Barreleye Fish and Stoplight Loosejaw are just a few of the weird and wonderful creatures discussed.

Regulations Set to Be Issued This Year Will Determine Course of Deep-Sea Mining

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Deep-sea mining for battery materials has gained significant interest over the past year, but 2023 is set to be a key turning point—both for the practice itself and the companies that are leading the campaign to exploit the ocean floor.

As a crucial meeting of the ISA approaches, the world watches on to see the what the implications will be for stock markets, trading groups and most crucially, the health of the planet.

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