Is this a good idea?
THE NEW GOLD.
At the bottom of the ocean, at a depth of 4,000 to 6,000 meters, lies the new gold. In the form of manganese nodules, which contain precious metals such as manganese, cobalt, nickel, platinum and molybdenum. These are needed for batteries, electric cars, wind turbines and solar panels. And demand for these metals will explode, on the order of 500% or more. Worldwide its value is estimated at 8 to 16 trillion dollars. 30 companies are already ready to start mining these metals on the ocean floor, including the Dutch-Swiss company Allseas. That could wreak havoc on deep-sea life in the ocean that we barely know about. Those manganese nodules are not inanimate objects, but are ecosystems with unique animal life living around them. Removing these manganese nodules causes ecological damage, the disappearance of marine life on the seabed and the loss of species and biodiversity. Those effects can last for decades, if not centuries.
In March this year, after 15 years of negotiations, a historic agreement was signed to protect nature. In this Montreal treaty it was agreed to give 30% of the seas and oceans a protected status (that was only 1.2%). Large-scale extraction of manganese nodules is at odds with this treaty. That is why nature and environmental organizations are calling for a moratorium on deep-sea construction, so that scientific research can first be done into the consequences for deep-sea life.
There are better alternatives, such as developing diplomacy and trade in critical metals, looking for alternatives to critical metals, but above all focusing on recycling and reuse as a prelude to the circular economy.
Let's not let this happen! No more massively mining the new gold and regretting it later, just like with oil, gas and coal. We can still stop this by exerting massive pressure and taking action en masse to ban the extraction of these precious manganese nodules. Let nature win this time and not man's greed...
Delving schaarse metalen voor batterijen op oceaanbodem leidt tot nieuwe dilemma's
De industrie staat klaar om kobalt en nikkel te delven op de bodem van de Stille Oceaan, maar de VN vergadert nog over regelgeving.