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Article

14 Mar 2022

Author:
Caleb Fotheringham, Radio New Zealand

The Pacific: Licences granted to mining companies to explore seabed minerals in the Cook Islands

"Seabed mineral exploration licences approved in the Cook Islands", 14 March 2022

[...]

Three companies given the licence are Cook Islands Colbalt (CIC) Limited, Moana Minerals Limited and Cook Islands Investment Company (CIIC) Seabed Resources Limited which is co-owned by the Cook Islands Government.

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[...] many nations and environmental groups like Te Ipukarea Society, a non-government organisation in the Cook Islands, has called for a 10-year-moratorium on seabed mining, something the Cook Islands Government with support from the opposition party have vocally opposed.

[...]

Goldman Environmental Prize winner and marine conservationist, Jacqueline Evans says seabed mining has a direct impact on the biodiversity that lives on and around the nodules. The disposal of sediment from the ship will also impact marine life, she says.

Another concern of Evans and the technical director at Te Ipukarea Society, Kelvin Passfield, is the companies could be reluctant to leave if they're granted a mining licence.

[...]