Pacific should not be used as a testing ground

ACT NOW! and the Fiji based, Pacific Network on Globilization, have joined forces to denounce plans for the Pacific to be used as the testing ground for deep-sea mining.

ACT NOW! and PANG say the Pacific region has already suffered the negative social and environmental impacts of industrial mining on land and should not take further risks with the marine environment.

Rather than allowing ourselves to be the testing ground for multinational companies and foreign governments, Pacific countries should focus on new approaches to our own development that are consistent with our lifestyle, history and social and political realities

Nautilus Minerals has already been granted a license by the PNG government to develop the world’s first deep-sea mine and the European Union has announced plans to help 15 Pacific island countries to develop laws and policies to facilitate such operations across the region.

Pacific island countries do not have the resources, capacity or experience to effectively manage and monitor large resource projects and government should focus on supporting their own people rather than large corporate interests.

We have had an alternative development model forced upon on us by outsiders but it is clear that model is not working for us and, indeed, is failing in the West as well. We, as Pacific people, need to find our own voice and return to a focus on our own strengths and knowledge base.

Deep-sea mining is likely to be another catastrophic failure for the region and we don’t need it.