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.
- MIDAS (Managing Impacts of Deep-Sea Resource Exploitation)
- Fact sheet on strategic priorities of raw materials
- 04/09/2015 - Call for proposals: EASME/EMFF/2015/126.96.36.199: Projects in the context of the Integrated Maritime Policy in the Black Sea and/or Mediterranean Sea regions
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The Arctic's Unique Role in Influencing the Global Climate
Intervention by Karmenu Vella, European Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, at the Global Leadership in the Arctic: Cooperation, Innovation, Engagement and Resilience (GLACIER) conference in Anchorage, USA