Science Night 18: Seabed Mining - Should it be Banned?
On Wednesday 10 May 2023, The Seabed Mining Prohibition Amendment Bill was voted down at first reading by the government failing the tens of thousands who have opposed the destructive industry entering Aotearoa, New Zealand waters. The draft bill, introduced by Te Pāti Māori's Debbie Ngarewa-Packer, was aimed at banning seabed mining for minerals.
Seabed mining poses a major threat to marine life including Popoto/Māui Dolphin... The iron sands off the west coast of the North Island and other minerals elsewhere in the waters of Aotearoa exist and make up unique marine habitats supporting broad diversity of marine life that keep our oceans functioning and healthy.
Since 2005, when the government of the day opened the seabed up for mining, companies have pushed and communities have pushed back, at great expense to many. Throughout three in depth EPA hearing processes and multiple court cases up to the Supreme Court, the lack of scientific knowledge of marine environments and the destructive nature of the proposed activity have prevented it from being consented.
Our guest speaker is Phil McCabe. Phil will explain:
- The government's move to appoint a select committee inquiry into seabed mining and why it is disappointing, given the wealth of experience it’s had over three failed seabed mining applications and three court cases.
- An update on the TTR seabed mining application process through the EPA.
- What individuals can do to stop seabed mining.
- The effects of mining on ocean life and the environment
Phil is a local surfer and lifelong Ocean lover who has engaged deeply in the seabed mining issue for over a decade. Firstly as Chairperson of KASM, 2012-17, raising public awareness and engagement in the west coast iron sands EPA processes. Since 2020 Phil has focused on international seabed mining and is the Pacific Regional Lead on Deep Sea Mining for the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, which seeks to pause the rushed process of opening the deep Pacific Ocean to massive-scale strip mining. His role includes engaging and collaborating with communities, organisations and governments in the Pacific and beyond on efforts to counter pro-mining governments and companies and the United Nations body in charge, the International Seabed Authority. While also advocating for the New Zealand government to ban seabed mining in NZ waters following their announced position for a moratorium in international waters last October.
This is a FREE event held in the front bar. All are welcome!
Arrive early if you want to order dinner, a drink and snag a good table. Science Night commences at 6pm.
Nau mai, haere mai!
Image description: Sea anemone on coral