David Attenborough calls for ban on ‘devastating’ deep sea mining

David Attenborough calls for ban on ‘devastating’ deep sea mining

Proposed mining of seabed could destroy unstudied ecosystems and disrupt vital carbon-storing functions, says naturalist

Sir David Attenborough has urged governments to ban deep sea mining, following a study warning of “potentially disastrous” risks to the ocean’s life-support systems if it goes ahead.

The study, by Fauna and Flora International (FFI), warns proposed plans to mine the seabed could cause significant loss of biodiversity, disruption of the ocean’s “biological pump”, and the loss of microbes important for storing carbon. The process, requiring machines operating thousands of metres under the sea, could also create plumes of sediment that smother areas far from the mining sites and kill wildlife.

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