Pacific Seabed society says no to seabed mining

Source: Radio New Zealand

A concerned group of NGOs say deep sea mining in the Pacific is being pushed forward without regard for ethics and moral principles.

The Pacific Civil Society group has issued a statement, signed by the PNG-based Bismarck Ramu Group, the Pacific Conference of Churches and the Pacific Network on Globalisation, saying there is too much emphasis on financial benefits, and too little on the impact on the environment and people.

A meeting in Rarotonga last week had 60 delegates discussing financial measures around the prospect of harvesting 'rare earth' minerals on the seabed around the Pacific.

Previous meetings have dealt with environmental concerns and social impacts, and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community has contributed advice from its applied geoscience and technology division.

But the Pacific Civil Society group says the Pacific is again being used as a testing ground, after nuclear testing last century, and there has been little consultation with landowners.