Imminent risk of irreversible biodiversity loss from deep-sea mining

Large areas of the deep-sea rich in biodiversity are at imminent risk of being opened to industrial-scale mining by the International Seabed Authority within the next two years. 

Scientists warn that this would cause irreversible loss of biodiversity and risk driving species extinct, some before they have been identified. The mining could ultimately destroy hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of deep ocean life and impact species and ecosystems across millions of cubic kilometers of open ocean over the next 30 years if the ISA begins licensing mining.


We were shocked by COP-14 ‘welcoming progress’ by the ISA to develop mining regulations. COP-15 must correct course sending a clear message that driving large-scale biodiversity loss in this planetary frontier is unacceptable and fundamentally counter to commitments and obligations to protect biodiversity. SBSTTA should amend CRP.2, paragraph 9, to ‘ensure’ deep-sea mining will not be permitted if it risks biodiversity loss or degradation of ecosystem functions, in particular carbon sequestration.


DSCC recommendations to SBSTTA are at

Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (DSCC)

Matthew Gianni/ tel/whatsapp: +31 646 16 88 99

Sian Owen/ ; tel: +31 648 50 26 59 


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