1 May, 2014

Source: UNEP Global Environmental Alert Service (GEAS)

The deep ocean, the largest biome on Earth at over 1000 metres below the surface of the ocean, holds vast quantities of untapped energy resources, precious metals and minerals. Advancements in technology have enabled greater access to these treasures. As a result, deep sea mining is becoming increasingly possible.

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1 March, 2013

Currently, there are a range of mining operations in the shallow seabed, including diamond mining in Namibia and Tin mining in Indonesia. Due to rising demand for minerals and metals and declining land-based resources, there has been a recent surge of interest in exploration of both shallow and deep sea resources. However, there are environmental concerns with mining the seabed. Only a fraction of the deep sea has been scientifically studied to date and there have been no commercial scale mining trials so far. Nonetheless, given the nature, scale and locations of proposed seabed mining activities serious and, in some cases, widespread negative impacts on habitats and marine life can reasonably be expected.

Available in English.