World Bulletin / News Desk
Canada's Nautilus Minerals mining company and Papua New Guinea have agreed on a deal to extract ores of copper, gold and other valuable metals from a depth of 1,500 meters under the sea.
Papua New Guinea will contribute $120m towards the costs of running the mine in return for a 15% stake.
Mike Johnston, chief executive of Nautilus Minerals, told BBC News, "there's always been a lot of support for this project and it's very appealing that it will generate a significant amount of revenue in a region that wouldn't ordinarily expect that to happen."
The Solwara-1 mine will be controlled using robotic machines, developed by UK-based underwater specialist manufacturer Soil Machine Dynamics, from a ship at the surface.
Environmental activists, however, have warned that seabed mining will be hugely destructive with unknown consequences. Greenpeace campaigner Richard Page told the BBC, "The emerging threat of seabed mining is an urgent wake-up call for the need to protect the oceans."
"The deep ocean is not yet mapped or explored and so the potential loss of fauna and biospheres from mining is not yet understood," he added, stating that only 3% of the oceans and only 1% of international waters are currently protected.
The mining, which will take place across a plain the size of 10 football fields, is likely to get underway in about five years.Güncelleme Tarihi: 26 Nisan 2014, 17:46