A global petition urging the International Seabed Authority (ISA) to discontinue deep-sea exploration permits and to initiate a moratorium on deep-sea mining has gathered over 700,000 signatures from concerned citizens around the world. The petition will be presented later this week to the International Seabed Authority during the 21st Annual Meeting of the ISA in Kingston, Jamaica.
The International Seabed Authority (ISA) will commence its annual meeting this week, during which it will debate sweeping new regulations to open vast expanses of the deep ocean to seabed mining.
Source: The Washington Post – Robert Gebelhoff
The technology and investment are ready, and the world is hurtling toward commercially extracting rare minerals thousands of feet beneath the ocean’s surface.
Source: Polpular Science – Mary Beth Griggs
A policy paper published today in Science is asking authorities to hold off on approving any more underwater mining contracts until more environmental controls are put in place.
Source: European Commission Maritime Forum
There is a strong imperative to maintain the functions and services of the marine ecosystems of the mid-Atlantic Ridge and Atlantic Basin during exploration and exploitation of deep-sea minerals. Here we propose to convene a workshop in Horta, Azores, 1-3 June 2015 in order to identify elements for a strategic Environmental Management Plan (EMP) for deep seabed mineral exploration and exploitation along the Atlantic in the international seabed Area (for now on called the Area). The workshop will bring together the main stakeholders, including representatives of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) and region-specific exploration contractors and prospectors together with scientists from different disciplines.
Source: Environment 360
Author: Mike Ives
For years, the idea of prospecting for potentially rich deposits of minerals on the ocean floor was little more than a pipe dream. Extractive equipment was not sophisticated or cost-effective enough for harsh environments thousands of feet beneath the ocean’s surface, and mining companies were busy exploring mineral deposits on land.
Source: Deep Sea Mining campaign
NGOs from Australia, Canada and India call for an international moratorium on deep seabed mining in light of the International Seabed Authority’s (ISA) issuing of 7 exploration licences for deep seabed mining in international waters.
Source: Huff Post Green
Author: Sophie Cocke
HONOLULU — Last summer, a team of Japanese scientists boarded the University of Hawaii’s Kaimikai O Kanaloa, a 223-foot, high-tech research ship docked in Honolulu Harbor, and headed out to sea. Their mission was to explore whether they will be able to tap into billions of dollars worth of coveted minerals that are believed to sit 5,000 meters beneath the sea in an area that runs from about 500 miles southeast of Hawaii toward Mexico. Japan is one of more than a dozen countries angling to profit off the vast mineral deposits that span 6 million square kilometers — an area the size of the United States — in what’s known as the Clarion-Clipperton Fracture Zone.
Source: National Geographic
Author: Michael Lodge
The sea floor is as crucial to human flourishing as the earth’s surface, and as in need of careful stewardship. Just like the terrestrial environment, it is made up of mountain ranges, plateaus, volcanic peaks, canyons and vast plains. It contains most of the same minerals we find on land, often in enriched forms, as well as mineral formations that are unique to the deep ocean such as ferromanganese crusts and manganese nodules.
Source: BBC World Service
Author: David Shukman
The prospect of a deep sea “gold rush” opening a controversial new frontier for mining on the ocean floor has moved a step closer.