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26 Feb 2023

Agence France-Presse

Nauru : Concerns, Impatience Over Mining World's Seabeds

"Concerns, Impatience Over Mining World's Seabeds ", 19 February 2023

The prospect of large-scale mining to extract valuable minerals from the depths of the Pacific Ocean, once a distant vision, has grown more real, raising alarms among the oceans' most fervent defenders.


[...] Nauru, impatient with the plodding pace of progress, made waves in June 2021 by invoking a clause allowing it to demand relevant rules be adopted within two years.

Once that deadline is reached, the government could request a mining contract for Nori (Nauru Ocean Resources), a subsidiary of Canada's The Metals Company.

Nauru has offered what it called a "good faith" promise to hold off until after an ISA assembly in July, in hopes it will adopt a mining code.


Target: 2024

Regardless, The Metals Company is making preparations.

"We'll be ready, and aim to be in production by the end of 2024," chief executive Gerard Barron told AFP.


But while island nations are among the first to feel the impact of global warming, Nauru says it can't wait forever for the funds rich countries have promised to help it adapt to those impacts.

"We're tired of waiting," said Deiye, the Nauru ambassador.