Username Password
PINA
Deep sea mining could destroy undiscovered species, says Ocean Panel
05:36 am GMT+12, 24/06/2020, South Africa

Mining on the sea floor should not begin before a full assessment of likely environmental impacts can be made, a report commissioned by the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy (Ocean Panel) said on Wednesday. 
 
Environmentalists including Britain’s David Attenborough have called for a ban on deep-seabed mining that would extract resources including copper, cobalt, nickel, zinc, lithium, and rare earth elements from nodules on the ocean floor.
 
The International Seabed Authority (ISA), a UN body headquartered in Jamaica, has drawn up regulations on exploration, but has yet to establish the rules for exploitation needed for mining to go ahead.
 
The report authored by six academics said deep seabed mining was a “sustainability conundrum”.
 
Sea floor nodules contain battery metals needed to fuel the world’s transition to clean energy, but trawling the sea floor for them is likely to disrupt ecosystems about which there has been scant research, as they are very difficult to reach.
 
“If mining was to go ahead with the current state of knowledge, species and functions could be lost before they are known and understood,” the authors wrote.
 
The ISA is set to discuss regulation that could allow deep seabed mining in its annual assembly, delayed from July to October this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
The report said international research should be conducted to fill gaps in knowledge before any seabed mining is allowed, and protected zones should be established across all ocean regions under the ISA’s jurisdiction.
 
The authors also recommended countries should encourage the recycling of battery metals to reduce the need to find new supplies.
 
The Ocean Panel brings together heads of state from 14 countries, including Australia, Canada, Chile, Kenya, Japan and Norway.

SOURCE: REUTERS/PACNEWS



 


News feature
There are no related media to this article.
Pacific Islands News Association
Who & What is PINA?
Membership
Member Countries
Media Freedom
Training
PINA Convention
Awards
Contact
Gallery
Forum
Events
Jobs
Classifieds
PACNEWS
Home
Regional
Feature
Business
Sports
Archives
Partners
Communications Initiative
International News Safety Institute (INSI)
UNDP PC
AusAID
NZAID
SPREP
ONOC
UNAIDS
Media Helping Media
Partners
PIFS
SPC
IFEX
UNESCO
AIBD
GFMD
SEAPA
WPFC
IFJ