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JPI Oceans project investigates environmental impact of deep sea mining


Mining Impact 2 involves the participation of 5 Portuguese teams

The deep sea is characterized by its great biodiversity and a soil rich in various ores where iron, copper, nickel, lithium, gold, cobalt, other rare minerals and even manganese nodule deposits can be found. JPI Oceans' new project, Mining Impact 2, aims precisely to assess the risks of deepwater mining and in particular the impacts that this activity can cause on the environment, the sea, and its ecosystem. To this end, it will carry out scientific monitoring of the impacts caused by an industrial intervention in manganese nodule deposits in the Clarion Clipperton Zone in the Pacific Ocean.

This project will continue the success achieved by the Mining Impact 1 project (2013-2017), in which Portugal also participated with two teams. It is now intended to produce more knowledge to predict the ecological, biogeochemical and hydrodynamic consequences of mining activity; test a variety of new methods and monitoring techniques to verify the state of ecosystems; and carry out comparative studies between different deep-sea environments. The knowledge gained will be passed on to the community and will inform policy makers and regulatory bodies, contributing to the definition of regulatory standards for seabed mining activities. The project will start in August 2018 and last 42 months.

Mining Impact 2 brings together 32 partners from 10 countries (Germany, Belgium, France, Netherlands, Italy, Jamaica, Norway, Poland, Portugal and United Kingdom), with total funding of 13,994.00 Mio €. Portugal will participate with 5 national teams from entities such as: CESAM - Center for Environment and Sea Studies; CIIMAR - Interdisciplinary Center of Marine and Environmental Research; IMAR - IMAR Center of the Azores University; IPMA - Portuguese Institute of Sea and Atmosphere, IP; and UALG - University of Algarve, with joint funding from FCT - Foundation for Science and Technology and DGPM - Directorate General of Sea Policy.

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