Plans to mine the deep sea bed aren’t anything new. Indeed, they have been around for at least as long as members of the United Nations have been tussling over who should “control” it. But now, as many terrestrial mineral deposits prove more problematic and costly to exploit than before, companies are advancing onto the ocean floor.
Leading the hungry pack is Nautilus Minerals, in which Anglo American is a leading shareholder. The Toronto-listed outfit has recently revived its previously-suspended Solwara project in the Papua New Guinea’s Bismarck Sea.
Closely behind Nautilus comes London’s Neptune Minerals, with 25 prospecting licenses in the territorial waters of Aotearoa/New Zealand, Micronesia and Vanuatu, as well as Papua New Guinea.