Will Future Electric Vehicles Be Powered by Deep-Sea Metals?

Both expeditions will collect baseline environmental data on the kinds of marine organisms that live on the seafloor, the composition and chemistry of bottom sediments, and the flow of underwater currents at different depths. Knowing these control measurements will be important in determining whether such mining can be done without destroying the underwater habitat.

“Our goal is to find out how much sediment the harvester will take off along with the nodules,” says Matthias Haeckel, a marine biochemist at the GEOMAR Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel, Germany, who is coordinating the environmental review of GSR’s activities for a project called MiningImpact. “That has never been done before.”

Plumes of sediment can harm…

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