Check out the top stories from the deep, taken from coverage between 21-28 August 2023
HOOK, LINE AND CONTROVERSY: THE IMPACT OF ILLEGAL TRAWLING
Source: Fair Planet
Author: Akbar Notezai
Fishermen and activists in Gwadar, Pakistan, are advocating for the government to take action by implementing patrols in the sea and putting an end to trawling activities, particularly within the 12 nautical miles of the shoreline.
Within Gwadar, the Chinese authorities are currently developing a deep-sea port, alongside which lies the quaint fishing village of Mullah Band. But despite Gwadar’s significant role in the CPEC, the local fishermen continue to struggle to make ends meet. In fact, the development of the deep-sea port and other CPEC-related projects in the city has exacerbated their hardships, displacing them and limiting their mobility.
9000 Feet Deep – Magnetic Bacteria Discovered in Deep-Sea Vents
Source: Sci Tech Daily
Author: University of Oxford
Magnetotactic bacteria, known for aligning with Earth’s magnetic field, have been discovered in deep-sea hydrothermal vents, expanding their known habitats and offering new insights into Earth’s history and the search for extraterrestrial life.
“Deep-sea hydrothermal vents attract attention not only as the birthplace of unique underwater life but also as a potential analogous habitat for extraterrestrial life,” says Associate Professor Yohey Suzuki from the Graduate School of Science at the University of Tokyo. “The environment where we sampled the bacteria is similar to what we think Mars was like when there was still flowing water on its surface, about 3 billion years ago.” It’s important we #DefendTheDeep so as to learn more about these ecosystems.
Deep-sea mining can yield many riches. The EU is against but its neighbours are keen
Source: Euro News
Author: Mared Gwyn Jones
The European Commission and the European Parliament are leading calls for an international moratorium on deep-sea mining until scientific gaps are filled.
Scientists know very little about the unique ecosystems that depend on these swaths of polymetallic nodules to survive. A geopolitical race to mine the seabed using unproven technology is worrying conservationists – who warn of irreversible damage to marine ecosystems – and dividing world leaders. So far, only seven EU member states – Spain, France, Germany, Sweden, Ireland, Finland and Portugal – have openly called for a mining pause. And some member states are breaking ranks with the EU position.
Pacific Parliamentarians Back Melanesian Leaders’ Deep Sea Mining Moratorium Call
Source: Daily Post
The Pacific Parliamentarians Alliance on Deep Sea Mining (PPADSM) welcomes the call by the Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) Leaders for a Pacific wide moratorium on Deep Sea Mining (DSM).
The call is part of the Udaune Declaration on climate change made by the leaders at the 22nd MSG Leaders’ Summit on the 24th of August, 2023. The Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) called for caution as there is still very little known of the effects of seabed mining to marine ecosystems and biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdictions. “We must not forget the vital ecosystem services that our ocean provides, such as capturing, sequestration and stable storage for carbon-dioxide and methane”, warned Debbie Ngarewa-Packer of the New Zealand parliament.
How deep-sea mining for EV materials could wipe out tuna populations
Source: Fast Company
Author: Miranda Lipton
Deep-sea mining wouldn’t just pollute the waters and endanger precious ecosystems. Experts say it could have terrible consequences for the tuna population, which would cause massive disruptions to the global food supply chain.
Sediment plumes from deep-sea mining process could prevent feeding or visual communication, potentially toxic metals could be absorbed by species, and noise and light pollution could disrupt behavior. “This is going to be a major threat to biodiversity,” says Daniela Fernandez, founder and CEO of Sustainable Ocean Alliance. “And these industries, they’re just not listening to it.”