MAC: Mines and Communities

From the Pacific to London; Ban Seabed Mining

Published by MAC on 2016-05-28
Source: Statement, Blue & Green (2016-05-24)

In 2013 MAC published a report of a protest at a London conference on deep sea mining (see: Deep Sea Mining Targeted By Activists At London Conference).

This year the conference was repeated, as was a similar action, with a focus on seabed mining in the Pacific.

Video and photos from the action are available at: https://www.facebook.com/deepseaminingpacific/?fref=nf

Also below is a press release sent out before Nautilus Minerals' AGM, drawing attention to the risks noted in the company's own information filed with the Canadian Securities Administrators

From the Pacific to London; Ban Seabed Mining

Media release (supported by London Mining Network, The Gaia Foundation, War on Want, Yes to Life, No to Mining, Deep Sea Mining Campaign and the Alliance of Solwara Warriors)

WHERE: Deep Sea Mining Summit, The Cumberland Hotel, Oxford Street London
WHEN: Tuesday 24 May 2016, 8:00-10:30am

LONDON | This morning, NGOs and civil society are outside the 5th Annual Deep Sea Mining Summit calling for a ban on a potentially environmentally destructive “frontier” industry. They are calling on the EU to stop funding such reckless development activities and are standing in solidarity with NGOs, churches and community across the Pacific.

Natalie Lowrey, from the Australian based Deep Sea Mining campaign stated, “The South Pacific is currently the world’s laboratory for the experiment of seabed mining. With over over 1.5 million square kilometres of ocean floor already under exploration leasehold the world’s first licence to operate a deep sea mine has been granted in Papua New Guinea to Canadian company Nautilus Minerals Solwara 1 project in the Bismarck Sea.”

The Alliance of Solwara Warriors, which is made up of over 20 communities and organisations across the Bismarck and Solomon Seas, are making a stand to ‘Ban Seabed Mining’ in PNG and the Pacific.

Patrick Kaupun, from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors stated, “We call on Papua New Guineans and allies internationally to stand up and defend the Bismarck Sea and all other seas under threat from seabed mining. Our government and Nautilus Minerals have not got the people’s free prior and informed consent. The sea is our life. We exist because the sea exists. We will not continue to remain quiet and passive. We have a responsibility to those generations that come after us; to those yet unborn.”

Janet Tokupep, also from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors said, “Judging from the monster size of the machines that will be tested in our seas, there is no question that this new “frontier” industry will destroy our environment and communities in PNG and the Pacific. With such serious liabilities in the face of an untested and untried industry, including the fact that we currently have terrible track records of terrestrial mining, seabed mining is a disastrous investment.”

Joseph Lambert from London based organisation, The Gaia Foundation said, ‘This highly experimental mining is being rushed ahead with more concern for profit than the damage it will do to the environment and communities. Our oceans are already facing unprecedented warming and acidification; when we should be caring for it most, mining companies are devising new ways to pollute it.’

A recent report from the World Bank stated that Pacific Island countries should take precaution over any plans for mining of their seabed’s due to a high risk of irreversible damage to their ecosystems. This calls into question EU funding towards the development of seabed mining in the Pacific, an industry which would be unacceptable in its own member countries.

“This is 21st Century colonialism”, explained Lowrey. “By funding and endorsing this experimental extractive industry, the EU are complicit in continuing the ‘empire’ tradition in which it believes it should be free to rape and pillage the Pacific for its own profit.”

For more info:

London: Natalie Lowrey, Deep Sea Mining Campaign, +61 421226200 natalie.lowrey@gmail.com
Papua New Guinea: Patrick Kaupan, Alliance of Solwara Warriors, +675 72773815;
Janet Tokupep, Alliance of Solwara Warriors, +675 73921840


Pacific Societies Call to Save Their Seas

http://blueandgreentomorrow.com/2016/05/25/pacific-societies-call-save-seas/

25 May 2016

National Governing Bodies and civil societies are calling on the European Union to stop funding “reckless development activities”. The South Pacific Ocean is widely used for exploration and experimentation and at the 5th Annual Deep Sea Mining Summit yesterday there was a call for a ban on this “frontier” industry. NGOs, communities and churches across the Pacific are backing the fight to save their ocean.

Natalie Lowrey, from the Australian based Deep Sea Mining campaign, said: “The South Pacific is currently the world’s laboratory for the experiment of seabed mining. With over 1.5 million square kilometres of ocean floor already under exploration leasehold the world’s first licence to operate a deep sea mine has been granted in Papua New Guinea to Canadian company Nautilus Minerals Solwara 1 project in the Bismarck Sea.”
The Alliance of Solwara Warriors, which is made up of over 20 communities and organisations across the Bismarck and Solomon Seas, are making a stand to ‘Ban Seabed Mining’ in PNG and the Pacific.

Patrick Kaupun, from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors, said: “We call on Papua New Guineans and allies internationally to stand up and defend the Bismarck Sea and all other seas under threat from seabed mining. Our government and Nautilus Minerals have not got the people’s free prior and informed consent. The sea is our life. We exist because the sea exists. We will not continue to remain quiet and passive. We have a responsibility to those generations that come after us; to those yet unborn.”

Janet Tokupep, from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors, added: “Judging from the monster size of the machines that will be tested in our seas, there is no question that this new “frontier” industry will destroy our environment and communities in PNG and the Pacific.

“With such serious liabilities in the face of an untested and untried industry, including the fact that we currently have terrible track records of terrestrial mining, seabed mining is a disastrous investment.”

Joseph Lambert from London based organisation, The Gaia Foundation, said: “This highly experimental mining is being rushed ahead with more concern for profit than the damage it will do to the environment and communities. Our oceans are already facing unprecedented warming and acidification; when we should be caring for it most, mining companies are devising new ways to pollute it.”

A recent report from the World Bank stated that Pacific Island countries should take precaution over any plans for mine on their seabed due to a high risk of irreversible damage to their ecosystems. This calls into question EU funding towards the development of seabed mining in the Pacific, an industry which would be unacceptable in its own member countries.

Lowrey added: “This is 21st Century colonialism. By funding and endorsing this experimental extractive industry, the EU are complicit in continuing the ‘empire’ tradition in which it believes it should be free to rape and pillage the Pacific for its own profit.”


 

Nautilus Minerals admits Papua New Guinea is a sea bed mining experiment

Deep Sea Mining Campaign media release

1 June 2016

TORONTO - As Nautilus Minerals holds its AGM in Toronto today, the Papua New Guinean Alliance of Solwara Warriors and the Deep Sea Mining Campaign encourage investors to think carefully about holding shares in this company.

Nautilus promotes its Solwara 1 sea bed mining project in the Bismarck Sea of Papua New Guinea as the lucrative new face of the mining industry, however, its most recent Annual Information Form found on www.sedar.com tells a different story.

According to Natalie Lowrey of the Deep Sea Mining Campaign, "The 2015 Annual Information Form lodged with the Canadian Securities Administrators reveals that the world first licensed sea bed mine is in fact a huge environmental, financial and technological experiment. The form admits that Nautilus has been too lazy and sloppy to perform standard economic and minerological assessments and that the environmental impacts of the operation are totally unknown."

Patrick Kaupun, of the Alliance of Solwara Warriors stated, “The Annual information form unashamedly states in black and white that Nautilus' Management considers it in the Company's best interests to use Solwara 1 to test the operational viability of the Seafloor Production System and the impacts of sea bed mining. This is not in the best interests of Papua New Guineans. We will not accept this sea bed mine. We put Nautilus and investors on notice that we will resist this venture and you will bear the costs!"

Janet Tokupep, also from the Alliance of Solwara Warriors said, “Judging from the monster size of the machines that will be tested in our seas, there is no question that this new frontier industry will destroy our environment and communities in PNG and the Pacific. Our coastal communities live only 30 kilometres from the proposed mine site and our fishermen use the area around it daily. The serious liabilities associated with the risks of Solwara 1 make it a disastrous investment.”

“The startling and damning admissions by Nautilus Minerals, reveal that the business case for Solwara 1 is extremely weak and the risks for investors extremely high", says Natalie Lowrey.

View the Nautilus Annual Information Form - attention to the section RISK FACTORS

For more info:
Papua New Guinea:
Patrick Kaupun, Alliance of Solwara Warriors, +675 72773815
Janet Tokupep, Alliance of Solwara Warriors, +675 73921840
Australia:
Natalie Lowrey, Deep Sea Mining campaign, +61 421226200, natalie.lowrey[at]gmail.com

 

 

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