Search

MEDIA RELEASE

Wednesday 28 June, 2017

NAUTILUS AGM: Solwara 1 Deep Sea Mining Venture Remains a Speculative Pipe Dream

At its annual general meeting in Vancouver last week, wannabe deep sea miner Nautilus Inc failed to inspire shareholders with confidence in its Solwara 1 venture in Papua New Guinea[1].

Without sufficient funds to complete its equipment build, Nautilus’ 2019 mining start date for its flagship Solwara 1 project is unlikely to be met.  Its financing strategy has been spectacularly unsuccessful with commercial operation delayed year after year since 2011.

Investors and local PNG communities have raised serious doubts about the company’s credibility.  Nautilus CEO Mike Johnston was put on the defensive by questions posed at the AGM regarding investment risk.

At the AGM, the Deep Sea Mining Campaign and the Vancouver-based Mining Justice Alliance reminded shareholders that Nautilus’ Annual information forms for financial years 2015 and 2016 describe serious environmental and economic risks that render its Solwara 1 project a purely speculative venture[2].

The Forms describe Solwara 1 as an experiment as both the environmental impacts and profits are complete unknowns. Nautilus has declined to conduct a preliminary economic assessment, pre-feasibility study or feasibility study – as per conventional industry practice.

“This level of risk has scared off responsible investors. More importantly in terms of risk, the Solwara 1 project is opposed by local communities who are deeply concerned that the project will pollute the marine environment and ruin their livelihoods, health, and culture, all of which are strongly linked to the sea.  The cost of conflict to mining projects has been well documented”[3] says Dr. Helen Rosenbaum of the Deep Sea Mining Campaign.

According to Kate Murray of the Mining Justice Alliance, “experience with other mining projects shows us that local opposition often results in legal and/or public relations disasters for companies. In the case of Solwara 1, local opposition appears to be mounting.”  She also posed the following questions to CEO Mike Johnston at the AGM:

  • “Is it true that without the normal economic and feasibility studies, the economic viability of Solwara 1 is unknown?
  • Is it true that the risk to shareholders of losing their entire investment in Nautilus is high and the potential returns promoted by Nautilus are purely speculative?
  • Is this why Nautilus is struggling to obtain the investment it requires to complete the construction of its vessel and equipment?”

Johnston declined to have his responses recorded and evaded providing clear answers. However, he did affirm the accuracy of the description of the Solwara 1 project in the Annual Information Forms as a “high” and “significant” risk. “

For more info:

AUSTRALIA
Helen Rosenbaum, Deep Sea Mining Campaign, hrose[at]vic.chariot.net.au,  +61 413201793

CANADA
Jamie Kneen, jamie[at]miningwatch.ca, +613 5693439

  

NOTES

[1] If it proceeds the Solwara 1 mine will be located in the Bismarck Sea of Papua New Guinea, approximately 25 km from the coastline of New Ireland Province, about 35 km from Duke of York Islands and 60 km from Kokopo township in East New Britain.   

[2] See sections on Risk factors in Annual information forms for financial years 2015 and 2016. For example:

“Our operations are speculative due to the high-risk nature of business related to the exploration and acquisition of rights to potential mineable deposits of metals. These risk factors could materially affect the Company’s future results and could cause actual events to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements relating to our Company.” (FY 2016, p 52)

“… Performance, availability, reliability, maintenance, wear and life of equipment are unknown. There can be no guarantee that sub-sea engineering and recovery systems can be developed or if developed, will be employable in a commercially-viable manner.”  (FY 2015, p54)

“… while Company studies have indicated a low likelihood of risk to the aquatic environment from mining activities, the actual impact of any SMS [seafloor massive sulphide] mining operations on the environment has yet to be determined.” (FY 2015, p61)

“Nautilus has not completed and does not intend to complete a preliminary economic assessment, pre-feasibility study or feasibility study before completing the construction and first deployment of the Seafloor Production System at the Solwara 1 Project.”  

 “No independent Qualified Person has confirmed the amount of these costs or recommended that these costs be incurred. There is significant risk with this approach and no assurance can be given that the Seafloor Production System, if fully funded and completed for deployment at the Solwara 1 Project, will successfully demonstrate that seafloor resource development is commercially viable.” (FY 15, p52)

[3] For example:  Davis, Rachel and Daniel M. Franks. 2014. “Costs of Company-Community Conflict in the Extractive Sector.” Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative Report No. 66. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Kennedy School.

 

Caritas Papua New Guinea

Justice, Peace, Relief & Development Agency of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference in PNG

We are prophets of a future not our own – Archbishop Romero               

______________________________________________                  

Representing the Diocese of Kavieng and speaking on behalf of His Lordship, Bishop Ambrose Kiapseni MSC DD and all the Catholic faithful of the Diocese of Kavieng, Vicar General, Fr Vincent Takin thereby; voicing out the objective of the Commission for Social Concerns, which Caritas Png is part and partial of, strongly emphasized that the “responsibility for the environment, the common heritage of mankind, extends not only to present needs but also to those of the future.”[1]

Fr Vincent further added that, “In order, for any development to take place, it is the people who must be the object of development and not subject to it in so far as they must have the absolute clear and transparent necessary background information on whatever development that will come about with all its impact on their; social, cultural, traditional, physical and spiritual aspects of their lives therefore giving their consent.”
IMAGE: Fr Vincent Takin the Parish Priest of St Martin of Tours Namatanai Parish speaking at the Seabed Mining Forum, Namatanai, New Ireland Province. June 8th, 2017.

 

 

 

 

“Seabed Mining is a totally new thing to our people and the world as a whole and why come and exploit our people and its beautiful environment? This year, the Universal Church has chosen its theme as the Year of the Children? Our decisions and activities today must be based on the common good of our future children and their children’s children”

“New Ireland has two (2) Gold mines with high grade gold, has logging activities with copra, oil palm and cocoa as the main commodities to its provincial resources’ income so why are we opening ourselves to something never tested nor proven which we never gave consent to but the government of the day did that without even having all the necessary information and knowledge as to whatever impact it will bear upon our people and our environment. Why exhaust all our natural resources at once when we have more than enough now? what about our future generation?”

“Therefore, for the sake of ourselves and our future generation, STOP USING US AND OUR ENVIRONMENT AS GUINEA PIGS”!!! HALT THE  SOLWARA 1 PROJECT!!! BAN SEABED MINING IN NEW IRELAND!”

 

Compiled by John Momori
Caritas PNG Parish Coordinator
St Martin of Tours Namatanai Parish

 

[1] Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church (Mumbai: Pauline Publications, 2004), 285.

MEDIA RELEASE

 20 June 2017

Nautilus to go under before reaching the ocean floor

Risk hindering finance, shares could well become stranded assets

VANCOUVER | Nautilus braces itself for yet another AGM of excuses and bad news for investors.  The wannabe deep sea miner is still struggling to convince financiers that its Solwara 1 deep sea mine is more than a sci fi pipe dream.[1]

The company is unable to complete the build of it support vessel and equipment. According to the Annual information forms it’s lodged with Canadian Securities, the financial and environmental risks are significant and the operation entirely speculative.[2]

“Even Nautilus doesn’t want to waste money on the economic assessments, feasibility studies, cost studies and the assessments of ore grades considered normal in the mining industry. Mainstream financiers are not interested in experiments nor are individual investors. This can be seen by the failure of share releases to raise funds for the company. Responsible shareholders weigh up the likely exposure to social and environmental risks and the value erosion that goes with that. In regards to Nautilus, they have voted with their wallets.”

says Dr. Helen Rosenbaum of the Deep Sea Mining Campaign.

In the past two weeks, two large forums against Nautilus Solwara 1 deep sea mining project in the Bismarck sea have been held in Papua New Guinea to audiences of hundreds of people. Supported by the Catholic Bishops and Caritas Papua New Guinea with key note speakers from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors, forums were held in Namatanai, New Ireland Province and Kokopo, East New Britain Province. Both forums called for the halt of Nautilus Solwara 1 project and a complete ban on seabed mining in PNG and The Pacific.

Patrick Kitaun, Caritas PNG Coordinator said,

“The Bismarck Sea is not a Laboratory for the world to experiment with sea bed mining. Our ocean is our life! We get all our basics from the ocean so we need to protect it.  We will not allow experimental sea bed mining in Papua New Guinea. It must be stopped and banned for good.”

Local communities are especially opposed to the Solwara 1 experiment. Jonathon Mesulam of the Alliance of Solwara Warriors stated,

“Nautilus, we are not guinea pigs for your mining experiment! We in the Pacific are custodians of the world’s largest ocean. These oceans are important to us as sources of food and livelihoods. They are vital for our culture and our very identity. In New Ireland Province, we are only 25 km away from the Solwara 1 site. It is right in the middle of our traditional fishing grounds. We will stand up for our rights!”

Vicar General, Father Vincent Takin, speaking on behalf of His Lordship, Bishop Ambrose Kiapseni MSC DD and all the Catholic faithful of the Diocese of Kavieng stated at the Seabed Mining Forum in Namtanai sais,

“In order, for any development to take place, the people must be the object of development and not subject to it. The people have not been fully informed about the impacts of Solwara 1 on the social, cultural, physical and spiritual aspects of their lives. Therefore they cannot give their consent.”

Dr. Catherine Coumans of MiningWatch Canada says

“Seabed mining is not only financially irresponsible, but also unconscionable given its unnecessary destruction of irreplaceable marine ecosystems. Our need for metals can be met in more creative and intelligent ways, in particular by the urban mining of electronic and other wastes, and the reduction of demand for virgin minerals through better product design, repairing and recycling.”[3]

“These options will provide win-win solutions for society, environment and the economy and gain a social licence that deep sea mining will never achieve. Shares in Nautilus’s Solwara 1 will be stranded assets.”


For more info:

PAPUA NEW GUINEA
Jonathon Mesulam, Alliance of Solwara Warriors representative, West Coast New Ireland Province, mesulamjonathan@gmail.com, +675 70038933

Patrick Kitaun, Caritas PNG Coordinator, Kavieng Diocese, caritaskavieng2@gmail.com, +675 70620453

To contact Fr Vincent Takin: John Momori,Caritas PNG Parish Coordinator, jeymomz50705@gmail.com, +675 70620714

AUSTRALIA
Helen Rosenbaum, Deep Sea Mining Campaign, hrose@vic.chariot.net.au,  +61 413201793

CANADA
Dr. Catherine Coumans, MiningWatch Canada, catherine@miningwatch.ca, +1 613-569-3439

_______________________________________________

NOTES

[1] If it proceeds the Solwara 1 mine will be located in the Bismarck Sea of Papua New Guinea, approximately 25 km from the coastline of New Ireland Province, about 35 km from Duke of York Islands and 60 km from Kokopo township in East New Britain.

[2] See sections on Risk factors in Annual information forms for financial years 2015 and 2016. For example:

“Our operations are speculative due to the high-risk nature of business related to the exploration and acquisition of rights to potential mineable deposits of metals. These risk factors could materially affect the Company’s future results and could cause actual events to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements relating to our Company.” (FY 2016, p 52)

“… Performance, availability, reliability, maintenance, wear and life of equipment are unknown. There can be no guarantee that sub-sea engineering and recovery systems can be developed or if developed, will be employable in a commercially-viable manner.”  (FY 2015, p54)

“… while Company studies have indicated a low likelihood of risk to the aquatic environment from mining activities, the actual impact of any SMS [seafloor massive sulphide] mining operations on the environment has yet to be determined.” (FY 2015, p61)

“Nautilus has not completed and does not intend to complete a preliminary economic assessment, pre-feasibility study or feasibility study before completing the construction and first deployment of the Seafloor Production System at the Solwara 1 Project.”

 “No independent Qualified Person has confirmed the amount of these costs or recommended that these costs be incurred. There is significant risk with this approach and no assurance can be given that the Seafloor Production System, if fully funded and completed for deployment at the Solwara 1 Project, will successfully demonstrate that seafloor resource development is commercially viable.” (FY 15, p52)

[3] Statement by Vicar General, Father Vincent Takin, representing the Diocese of Kavieng and speaking on behalf of His Lordship, Bishop Ambrose Kiapseni MSC DD and all the Catholic faithful of the Diocese of Kavieng. View full statement here: http://www.deepseaminingoutofourdepth.org/statement-diocese-of-kavieng-vicar-general-fr-vincent-takin/

[4] For example, No Mining Required; No more mining says Apple; and Apple will stop relying on mining for minerals ‘one day’; California based Blue Oak Resources estimates that every year mining companies spend roughly $12 billion for virgin ore deposits. While tons of cell phones and other electronics are thrown out every year, each ton contains 70 times the amount of gold and silver found in virgin ore. For copper the number is even higher, with the equivalent of roughly one-third of global mining production thrown out in e-waste globally every year;  ‘Urban mining’: UBC engineers say e-waste richer than ore pulled from the ground;  Can ‘urban mining’ solve the world’s e-waste problem? And http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/DSM-RE-Resource-Report_UTS_July2016.pdf

IMAGE: Participants at the Seabed Mining Forum in Namatanai, New Ireland Province, PNG calling for a ban on Seabed Mining in PNG & the Pacific. June 8th,  2017

 

 

Boss Magazine, June 2017 Issue

The Final Frontier for Mining: The Ocean Floor

Mining the seafloor is no easy task, but it may become a necessity sooner than we think.

The world's first true deep-sea mining project scheduled to dive in off Papua New Guinea starting in 2019

Global demand for metals like iron and copper could quadruple by 2050 and producers are already being forced to dig deeper to extract less concentrated deposits today. That was the warning delivered by Yale University‘s Thomas Graedel at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Boston.

While Graedel caught the attention of reporters with his pronouncement, he was not there merely to deliver bad news. Instead, Graedel and other participants in an AAAS panel headlined “Should We Mine the Seafloor?” were focused on solutions.

With the world’s first true deep-sea mining project scheduled to dive in off Papua New Guinea starting in 2019, the deepest reaches of our oceans could become a prime source of much-needed metals for a long time to come.

Getting there, however, will require overcoming a whole host of challenges, from the brutal pressure that prevails thousands of feet down, to assessing and controlling the environmental impact of this fundamentally new form of mining.

Prime Terrestrial Sources are Beginning to Run Dry

Copper has become one of the world’s most important resources: today, it’s used in products ranging from compact electronic devices to huge industrial motors. Global production of the metal has roughly doubled over the last forty years, with demand still growing by close to 600,000 tons annually.

As highly populated countries like China and India continue to develop, that demand will only increase.

A heightened pace of exploration has helped double the world’s proven terrestrial copper reserves over the last two decades. In many cases, though, these newly discovered deposits are deeper down in the Earth or less dense with the targeted mineral, and are much more difficult and expensive to extract.

With similar tensions holding for other critical metals like iron and gold, satisfying future demand through existing means of production looks increasingly challenging.

Even with prices remaining fairly low and stable in global commodity markets for now, experts fear what could happen if new sources are not discovered and drawn from soon.

Under even the most generous projections, worldwide demand for copper could exceed terrestrial means of supplying it before the century is over.

Metallic Treasures at the Bottom of the Sea

Some suggest that underwater habitats could be destroyed or altered by mining and the plume that results

Scientists have known for many years that the depths of the ocean harbor deposits of metals like copper, gold, silver, and zinc. Beginning in 1873, Royal Society representatives aboard the HMS Challenger dredged up metallic nodules many times as the steam-assisted ship progressed on its pioneering, global research journey of nearly 70,000 nautical miles.

Today, experts recognize three distinct types of metal-rich deposits that are commonly found on deep-sea floors beyond the continental shelves.

Polymetallic nodules form like pearls made from metal as layers of iron and manganese hydroxide settle upon suitable seafloor objects like fossils, sharks’ teeth, and other kinds of debris. Thought to exist as deep as 20,000 feet under the sea in places, these loose deposits might otherwise be especially easy to retrieve.

Ferromanganese crusts crop up in shallower waters, with a typical range from around 1,300 to 16,000 feet. These undersea deposits form in areas where sharp underwater features like ridges and submerged mountains pull dissolved metals from seawater.

Although some crusts could be rich in relatively rare metals like cobalt, surrounding terrain could make extracting them a difficult task.

Seafloor massive sulfides were first discovered in 1948 in the Red Sea by a Swedish team of oceanographers. Often containing large amounts of terrestrially abundant metals such as copper, iron, lead, and zinc alongside rarer ones—gold and silver—these plume-shaped deposits crop up alongside undersea hydrothermal vents.

Deep-Sea Mining Dreams Start to Become Reality

While the existence of such deposits has been recognized for a long time, they have yet to be turned into reliable, viable sources of the metals the world needs. Even just the pressures and temperatures typical of the depths many are found at have previously seemed to rule out retrieval.

That is starting to change, however. A Canadian company called Nautilus Minerals has already contracted with the government of Papua New Guinea to pursue extraction of deep-sea polymetallic sulfides off that country’s coast. Starting in 2019, Nautilus Minerals plans to send teams of 200-ton robots to the seafloor roughly 6,000 feet below, with the slurry they harvest being pumped back up to a support vessel on the surface.

The Solwara 1 deposits the project will target are estimated to contain over seven percent copper by volume. Compared to the fraction of a percent typical of average-quality terrestrial mines today, that alone could make the joint venture with state-owned Kumul Minerals Holdings viable.

While investors have already backed Nautilus Minerals with several rounds of funding, others have expressed less confidence. Environmentalists, for example, have at best viewed the company’s plans with suspicion.

Some suggest that underwater habitats could be destroyed or altered by mining and the plume that results, with unforeseen consequences possibly rippling through economically important, food-producing ecosystems far away.

Coming at the situation from a different angle, some have speculated about how the massive investments required for this kind of deep-sea mining might fare if the world’s commodities markets experience another marked downturn.

Where a terrestrial mine might be idled fairly easily to weather lower prices, the demanding, all-in nature of deep-sea extraction would seem to restrict such responses.

While plenty of uncertainty still needs to be resolved, pushing ahead for at least some time seems like the best answer to many. As the group tasked with licensing seafloor exploration and mining activity outside of national waters, the International Seabed Authority has granted permission for dozens of countries to look into opportunities of these kinds.

It could be many years yet before deep-sea mining becomes a significant source of metals the world needs so badly, but it might well turn out to be part of a solution that lasts for a century or more to come.

 

MEDIA RELEASE

Tuesday 2nd May 2017

Apple’s Commitment to a No-Mining Future Makes Deep Sea Mining Unnecessary

Scientists and civil society organisations from around the world welcome Apple’s 2017 Environment Responsibility Report announcing the communication technology giant’s goal to “stop mining the earth altogether”[1].  They call on other companies to match this commitment.

Apple’s goal is at odds with the excitement generated in some circles over proposals to mine the deep sea, and in particular by the world’s first deep sea mine (DSM) to be granted an operating licence in Papua New Guinea[2]. 

The announcement by Apple recognises the strong groundswell building for a circular economy that has eco-design, re-use, repairing, and recycling at its core. This will require other companies to also develop innovative business models and in particular mining companies to move beyond the current crude approach to sourcing minerals.

Professor Richard Steiner of Oasis Earth stated: ” One of the default arguments of DSM proponents is that the world economy will need the Rare Earth Elements and other minerals from the deep ocean for a growing demand for communications technologies.  Apple’s announcement shows this is will not be the case. The days of digging holes for raw materials, using them once or twice, discarding them into landfills, and then digging more holes for more raw materials to waste – are clearly numbered!”

Christina Tony, from the Bismarck Ramu Group in Papua New Guinea said, “Our coastal communities in the Bismarck Sea are subject to the world’s first deep sea mining experiment – driven by Nautilus Inc. and investors such as Anglo American.  Why are these companies happy to sacrifice our people’s heath, livelihoods, culture, and marine environment.  This primitive and violent approach to mining belongs with the dinosaurs.   Apple is showing us a sophisticated vision of a sustainable future.”

Dr. Helen Rosenbaum, Deep Sea Mining campaign stated, “Deep Sea Mining is risky business as both the environmental impacts and the returns are complete unknowns. Nautilus’ Annual Information Form, lodged with Canadian securities, emphasizes the experimental nature of the Solwara 1 project. In addition, report after report[3] demonstrates the world’s oceans are already on the brink of peril. With our Pacific partners we call for a complete ban on Deep Sea Mining and for  mining companies and electronics manufacturers to instead turn their mind to developing closed loop economies.”

Dr. Catherine Coumans of MiningWatch Canada says “Some mining for virgin minerals on  land may still be required in the short term to meet demand not satisfied by recycling, urban mining and reducing consumption[4]. But these alternatives provide win-win solutions for society, the environment and the economy.  The right choice is really a “no-brainer” and we welcome Apple’s foresight in leading the way. There is absolutely no need for deep sea mining [5].”

For more info:

Alaska:
Professor Richard  richard.g.steiner@gmail.com +1 907 360 4503 

Papua New Guinea:
Christina Tony, chrisamoka20@gmail.com +675 70942439, Bismarck Ramu Group

Australia:
Helen Rosenbaum , hrose@vic.chariot.net.au +61 413201793  Deep Sea Mining Campaign

Canada:
Dr. Catherine Coumans (Canada), catherine@miningwatch.ca +1 613-569-3439

_______

NOTES

[1] No Mining Required; No more mining says Apple; and Apple will stop relying on mining for minerals ‘one day’.

[2]  See reports: Out of our Depth: Mining the Ocean Floor in Papua New Guinea (November 2011) http://www.deepseaminingoutofourdepth.org/wp-content/uploads/Out-Of-Our-Depth-low-res.pdf  ;  Physical Oceanographic Assessment of the Nautilus Environmental Impact Statement for the Solwara 1 Project – An Independent Review (November 2012) http://www.deepseaminingoutofourdepth.org/wp-content/uploads/EIS-Review-FINAL-low-res.pdf ; Accountability Zero: A Critique of Nautilus Minerals Environmental and Social Benchmarking Analysis of the Solwara 1 project (September 2015) http://www.deepseaminingoutofourdepth.org/wp-content/uploads/accountabilityZERO_web.pdf

[3] Reports include: World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Reviving the Ocean Economy (2015) ; The Living Planet (2016);  International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) State of the Ocean (2013) ; Explaining Ocean Warming (2016); and the United Nation’s World Ocean Assessment 2016 which is a global inventory of the state of the marine environment and problems threatening to degrade the oceans. Recent research from the MIDAS consortium indicates a concrete risk that deep sea mining would lead to serious irreversible harm.

[4] For example, California based Blue Oak Resources estimates that every year mining companies spend roughly $12 billion for virgin ore deposits. While tons of cell phones and other electronics are thrown out every year, each ton contains 70 times the amount of gold and silver found in virgin ore. For copper the number is even higher, with the equivalent of roughly one-third of global mining production thrown out in e-waste globally every year; ‘Urban mining’: UBC engineers say e-waste richer than ore pulled from the ground;  Can ‘urban mining’ solve the world’s e-waste problem?

[5] For example, http://www.savethehighseas.org/publicdocs/DSM-RE-Resource-Report_UTS_July2016.pdf

MEDIA RELEASE

 24 April 2017

Anglo American should divest from high risk deep sea mining

Multinational mining company Anglo American will be held accountable today at its annual shareholder meeting. The company’s investment in the experimental Nautilus Minerals Solwara 1 deep sea mining project, is deeply opposed by local communities, churches and wider civil society in Papua New Guinea. These stakeholders ask Anglo American to divest from Nautilus Inc.

Anglo American is proud of its international commitments to sustainability, human rights, and environmental stewardship, but will they inform shareholders that their investment in Nautilus does not respect people’s culture and heritage?

“Anglo American, we are not guinea pigs for your experimental project!” stated Jonathan Mesulam from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors. “We in the Pacific are custodians of the world’s largest ocean. These oceans are important to us as sources of food and livelihoods. They are vital for our culture and our very identity. Solwara 1 is in the middle of our traditional fishing grounds. You are threatening our home and our existence with experimental seabed mining.”

Christina Tony, from the Bismarck Ramu Group in PNG, said, “Anglo American, Solwara 1 does not respect local communities’ livelihoods, health, food security and culture all of which are strongly linked to the sea. Our people have not provided their informed consent for this project. The Solwara 1 Environmental Impact Statement contains many gaps and errors – we can’t even obtain all the environmental research reports. By investing in this industry, Anglo American is complicit in trampling on our human rights.”

Dr. Helen Rosenbaum, Deep Sea Mining campaign stated, “Deep Sea Mining is risky business as both the environmental impacts and the returns are complete unknowns. Nautilus’ Annual Information Form, lodged with Canadian securities, emphasises the experimental nature of the Solwara 1 project. In addition, report after report[1] demonstrates the world’s oceans are already on the brink of peril. Recent research from the MIDAS consortium indicates a concrete risk that deep sea mining would lead to serious irreversible harm. With our Pacific partners. we call for a complete ban on Deep Sea Mining and for Anglo American to dissociate itself and its shareholders from this unjust experiment.”

Andy Whitmore, London Mining Network says “We welcome Anglo American’s desire to look for more sustainable forms of mining to meet society’s needs[2][3]. However, deep sea mining is not the answer. Instead, the solution should prioritise environmental protection and resource conservation while maintaining economic benefits. We ask Anglo American to divest from sea bed mining and instead get behind alternatives to traditional mining developments and truly cutting edge approaches hold the promise of win-win solutions for society and the environment. 

For more info:

Papua New Guinea:
Jonathan Mesulam, mesulamjonathan[at]gmail.com +675 70038933, Alliance of Solwara Warriors
Christina Tony, chrisamoka20[at]gmail.com +675 70942439, Bismarck Ramu Group

Australia:
Helen Rosenbaum, hrose[at]vic.chariot.net.au +61 413201793, Deep Sea Mining Campaign

London:
Andy Whitmore, whit[at]londonminingnetwork.org +44 (0) 7754395597, London Mining Network


NOTES

[1] Reports include: World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Reviving the Ocean Economy (2015) ; The Living Planet (2016);  International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) State of the Ocean (2013) ; Explaining Ocean Warming (2016); and the United Nation’s World Ocean Assessment 2016 which is a global inventory of the state of the marine environment and problems threatening to degrade the oceans.

[2] For example, California based Blue Oak Resources estimates that every year mining companies spend roughly $12 billion for virgin ore deposits. While tons of cell phones and other electronics are thrown out every year, each ton contains 70 times the amount of gold and silver found in virgin ore. For copper the number is even higher, with the equivalent of roughly one-third of global mining production thrown out in e-waste globally every year; ‘Urban mining’: UBC engineers say e-waste richer than ore pulled from the ground;  Can ‘urban mining’ solve the world’s e-waste problem?

[3] In Apple’s 2017 Environment Responsibility Report released last Wednesday 19th April, the company has announced a new, unprecedented goal for the tech industry to “stop mining the earth altogether”. Read more: No Mining Required; No more mining says Apple; and Apple will stop relying on mining for minerals ‘one day’.