New industries in the deep sea
In progress from 01-04-2007 to 01-07-2007
Project manager: Dr Jonathan Wentworth
Environment, Environmental technology
More than 70% of the Earth is covered by the oceans, which have an average depth of four kilometres. In the deep sea there is no light, low temperatures and crushing pressure, yet a wide variety of creatures are adapted to these extreme conditions. New technologies give unprecedented access to deep waters, revealing a wealth of new habitats and organisms, and also presenting opportunities for exploiting new resources. This POSTnote examines the specific cases of deep- seabed mineral extraction, bioprospecting and CO2 storage. It highlights the difficulties in promoting development of economic opportunities while protecting the deep sea environment.