environment

Deep-sea mining research at the NOC

The National Oceanography Centre (NOC) is engaged in research into the potential risks and benefits of exploiting deep-sea mineral resources, some of which are essential for low-carbon technology, as well as using ocean robots to estimate the environmental impact of these potential deep-sea mining activities.

Long-term impacts of deep-sea mineral mining

Image of the seafloor in the abyssal Pacific showing nodules and large deep-water prawn (Bathystylodactyloidea). Image shows an area of seafloor approximately 50cm across.

A new international study has demonstrated that deep-sea nodule mining will cause long-lasting damage to deep-sea life. This study, led by scientists at the National Oceanography Centre (NOC), was the first to review all the available information on the impacts of small-scale sea-floor disturbances simulating mining activity.