A new report from Greenpeace International has found that deep seabed mining could have a serious impact on the ocean environment and on the livelihood of coastal communities.
In a Report just released it calls for a suspension in the granting of deep seabed mining licenses.
Ms Seni Nabou, the political advisor for Greenpeace, told Radio Australia’s Pacific Beat that a license had already been granted for deep seabed mining in Papua New Guinean waters, but a lot more work needed to be done to protect the world’s oceans before companies should be allowed to start operating.
“We don’t believe that seabed mining applications should be granted,” Ms Nabou said.
“No exploration or exploitation should take place unless or until the full range of marine habitats, biodiversity and ecosystem functions are adequately protected.”
Ms Nabou says many of the habitats on the deep sea floor are yet to be studied by scientists.
“The habitats are dark, previously thought to be lifeless by scientists, but we know now that this is not true,” she said.
“There are still too many unknowns out there, which is why we are joining the Pacific Conference of Churches…in calling for a moratorium on these applications until we know more.”
“We particularly want to see rules to ensure that environmental and cumulative impacts of seabed mining as well as potential impacts, alternative uses and livelihoods have been thoroughly assessed,” she said.
Swakopmund Matters For Swakopmund Matters the environment of the Namibian coastline and its ocean matters