ACOPS Dialogue on Deep-Sea Mining

ACOPS Dialogue on Deep-Sea Mining

House of Lords, 3 December 2015

Committee Room 3A, 14:00 – 16:30

To reserve your place at this ACOPS event, please RSVP to

(we have been advised that it doesn’t matter that the deadline stated in the attached document has passed!)

PDF invite here: ACOPS_DSM_3Dec2015

Background of event:

Deep-sea mining for metals is predicted to start in 2018. Over a decade of exploration has yielded information on where mineral deposits can be found and new technologies will make mining in the deep sea possible. However, the deep-sea environment is vulnerable to disturbance, and the environmental impacts of mining have yet to be fully assessed. The UK has strategic interests both as a commercial contractor and as a State with obligations and duties under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea to protect the marine environment. The European Union includes mineral resources as one of its five sectors with high potential to be developed for sustainable Blue Growth. The aim of this dialogue is to raise awareness about the challenges and opportunities faced by this emerging industry.


Lord Julian Hunt of Chesterton, President of ACOPS

Lord Hunt will welcome participants and explain the role of ACOPS.

Professor David Johnson, Chairman of ACOPS

Professor Johnson will explain the role of the International Seabed Authority and the growing interest of governments and society in Blue Growth. He will introduce the invited speakers and moderate questions and discussion.

Professor Philip Weaver, Coordinator of the MIDAS project

Professor Philip Weaver will provide an overview of the current state of deep-sea mining, explaining what we currently know and underlining where the major knowledge gaps lie. He will demonstrate how the MIDAS project, an EC-funded research programme investigating the environmental impacts of deep-sea mining, will make progress towards closing these these gaps.

Dr Daniel Jones, Senior Marine Biologist, National Oceanography Centre

Dr Jones will illustrate the complexities of the deep-sea environment from a scientific perspective, focusing on a region of potential mining in the central Pacific Ocean. He will present images and information from his recent research expedition to the area aboard the British research vessel RRS James Cook.

Dr David Billett, UK representative on the ISA Legal and Technical Commission & Prof. Philomene Verlaan, Senior Advisor to ACOPS

Dr Billett and Prof. Verlaan will provide details of the emerging legal regime for deep-sea mining. As deep-sea mining contractors move from exploration to exploitation, how they operate and their obligations to report information on how they are proceeding will be governed by this regime.

Dr Chris Vivian, Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture

Dr Vivian will share his experience gained from long-term engagement in leading the UK delegation to the London Convention/London Protocol, and how the LC/LP may provide some solutions applicable to deep-sea mining.



Background on ACOPS:

The mission of ACOPS is to promote strategies for sustainable global development relating to coastal and marine environment through scientific, legal and policy research and advisory and public awareness activities. Studying our seas and oceans both as indicators of pollution and as a threatened resource in their own right, ACOPS strives to identify cost-effective, long-term environmental solutions that can be effectively implemented across the world. For more information please visit

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *