Maritime Forum
Mineral exploration and exploitation

Deep seabed mining has been arousing interest since the 1960s but no commercial mining activity has yet begun. However, in the last decade interest has increased. Operations would be controlled from a floating platform at the sea surface and target one of four broad classes of deposits:

  • polymetallic nodules;
  • polymetallic sulphides;
  • cobalt-rich crusts
  • rare earth element-rich deep-sea sediments
EU research on Deep Sea Mining up to 2016

EU research programmes contributed €27 million on three major projects starting in 2013 , 2014 and 2016 and researchers from eleven countries contributed €13.2 million for a joint effort under the auspices of the Joint Programming Initiative for Seas and Oceans

Last update: 27/02/17

Study to investigate the state of knowledge of deep-sea mining

The study covers the current and latest state of knowledge of deep-sea mining, including the geological potential, the relevant technologies, the economic viability, the environmental implications, the legal regime, and an inventory of ongoing exploration and exploitation projects.

Last update: 01/02/18

New Frontiers - Ocean Minerals Exploration and Development Brussels June, 2014

presentations on current state of deep-sea mining

Last update: 14/09/14

Draft report on deep sea mining

covers geological, legal, economic, technological and environmental issues as well as an overview of ongoing and planed activity

Last update: 01/02/18

Study to investigate state of knowledge of Deep Sea Mining: interim report

in order to develop an informed approach to deep-sea mining, the European Commission launched a study. A draft interim report has been delivered after 4 months looking at technological, economic, geological, legal and environmental aspects

Last update: 01/02/18

Commission receives proposal for study on deep-sea mining

Last update: 02/08/13

EU activities for raw materials (not necessarily underwater)

Critical raw materials for the EU Report of the Ad-hoc Working Group on defining critical raw materials

Last update: 05/07/10