Is deep-sea mining worth the risk?

Date: March 6, 2018

Source: Euractiv 

There is no evidence that deep-sea mining will reduce our dependency on land-based mining. We need to end business as usual and act to reduce the demand for these raw materials by making the transition towards a circular economy, write a group of Greens/EFA MEPs.

Linnéa Engström from Sweden, Marco Affronte from Italy, Bart Staes and Philippe Lamberts from Belgium are all Members of European Parliament for the Green/EFA group. MEP Lamberts is the co-president of the Greens/EFA.

In a Parliament resolution on Ocean Governance adopted in January this year a strong majority of the Parliament called for a moratorium on the exploitation of deep-sea mining in international waters.

Big decisions are in the makings. This week the 36 states that are members of the Council of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) meet in Jamaica to begin negotiations on a draft set of regulations to permit the exploitation of deep-sea minerals in international waters. The ISA regulates mining in an area which encompasses nearly 50% of the earth. Until now the only exploration of deep-sea minerals in this area has been permitted by the ISA, but the ISA intends to have brand-new regulations in place by 2020 to allow for commercial exploitation.

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