Webinar – Deep Sea Mining: Bringing the Issues to the Surfaces
20 April 2022, 11.00 – 12.30 CET
The deep sea mining activity is being increasingly considered as part of the solution to meeting the growing need for metals in the green economy. Relevant stakeholders – governments, international organizations, companies, scientific and civil society – are scrutinizing the technology and defining their positions on it. The Cobalt Institute’s webinar gathered participants with different views to exchange opinions on the risks and opportunities of deep sea mining, knowledge gaps that have to be filled and decisions that have to be taken for it to become a reality.
|12.00||Q&A with webinar participants, moderated by Adam McCarthy, President, Cobalt Institute|
Winnie Yeh, Lead, Responsible Sourcing, World Economic Forum: “A question on whether deep sea minerals should be exploited is one of the biggest decisions of resource governance of our time. It is a debate with strong emotion. Yet to make sound decisions on deep sea mineral stewardship, we need more knowledge and more stakeholder participation.” (Winnie Yeh was presenting the World Economic Forum’s White Paper “Decision-Making on Deep-Sea Mineral Stewardship: A Supply Chain Perspective”).
Jessica Battle, Senior Expert Global Ocean Policy and Governance, WWF: “We have to ensure that the ocean is our ally when fighting climate change. Minerals are not a sustainable resource and deep sea mining would cause damage to habitats in the deep sea we only know little about. My plea is to push pause, establish a moratorium on deep sea mining to allow for the science and for the development of alternatives.”
Prof. Alex Rogers, Science Director, REV Ocean; Senior Research Fellow, University of Oxford: “Deep sea mining will have consequences for biodiversity and how the ocean works. Impacts on the deep sea are very slow to recover and some are not likely to recover at all on human time scales. It is important to recognize we are facing both a climate crisis and a biodiversity crisis: it is about our ability to manage the ocean properly.”
Alex Herman, Seabed Minerals Commissioner, Seabed Minerals Authority, Cook Islands: ““When it comes to deep sea harvesting there are knowledge gaps in understanding the potential impacts – research and testing are going to be critical for the Cook Islands to make science-based decisions. Building partnerships and collaborating with various stakeholders is needed for this.”
Dr Adrian Glover, Merit Researcher, Natural History Museum London: “Understanding, knowledge, discussion, and transparency is needed when it comes to deep sea mining. We must measure the environmental impact differently in the deep sea. We need to apply pressure to the governances around the world as funding and investments are needed to increase the research and to come to a conclusion on the topic.”