The world’s leading deep-sea mining company last week announced it had “unveiled” (sic) another high grade copper deposit at the bottom of Papua New Guinea’s Bismarck Sea. Dubbing the deposit “Solwara 12″, Nautilus Minerals made the new venture sound like a glorified expedition to another planet. Its Solwara 1 project is already said to be “ground breaking”, while the “discovery” of Solwara 12 signified the possiblity of a “pipeline of projects in the Bismarck Sea”.
The announcement is bound to deepen the alarm, felt by many in Papua New Guinea, that Nautilus has embarked on a hugely destructive enterprise. Just last week, their fears were confirmed by an independent scientific review of the company’s environmental impact statement.
Note: Nautilus Minerals is listed on the Toronto and London-AIM stock exchanges. Among its largest shareholders are UK-listed Anglo American (11.1%) and Canada’s Teck Resources (6.8%). The Russian metallurgical holding company, Metalloinvest, beneficially owns 21.0% of the company’s issued shares through Gazmetall Holding (Cyprus) Limited.
Papua New Guinea: Video Report Of Indigenous People And Views On Seabed Mining
Community groups in New Ireland and East New Britain express their views about seabed mining in the Bismarck and the Solomon Sea.