What is it?
The quantity of minerals occupying the ocean floor is potentially large. Seabed mining is concerned with the retrieval of these minerals to:
- ensure security of supply; and
- fill a gap in the market where either recycling is not possible or adequate, or the burden on terrestrial mines is too great.
Why EU-level action?
Numerous organisations within the EU are presently engaged in seabed mining activities, both as technology providers and as mine operators. The sector, though small, has been identified as having the potential to generate sustainable growth and jobs for future generations.
However, our lack of knowledge of the deep-sea environment necessitates a careful approach. The European Commission is thus engaged in a variety of studies and projects aimed at shedding light on the benefits, drawbacks and knowledge gaps associated with this type of mining.
- Communication from the Commission: Blue Growth opportunities for marine and maritime sustainable growth [85 KB] All available translations.
- Hotspot ecosystem research on the margins of European seas (HERMES)
- Hotspot Ecosystem Research and Man's Impact on European Seas (HERMIONE)
- Fact sheet on strategic priorities of raw materials
Commission welcomes Parliament support for better maritime planning
The European Parliament voted today to support the Commission’s proposal for a Directive on Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) and Integrated Coastal Management (ICM) – a cornerstone policy of the EU's Blue Growth agenda.
Fisheries and aquaculture stakeholders explore the benefits of Maritime Spatial Planning
On 15 November 2013, the Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE) organised a workshop on Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) and fisheries and aquaculture in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Echanges sur le Port de pêche du Futur
Discours de Lowri Evans, Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, 29 novembre 2013