NZ: Eco groups criticise Chatham Rock plans for seabed mining

Papua New Guinea Mine Watch

The Environmental Defence Society says Chatham Rock’s plan to mine phosphate off the seabed threatens seabirds and marine mammals.

NZ City

Environmental lobbyists have criticised plans by Chatham Rock Phosphate to mitigate the impact of its proposal to mine phosphate nodules from the Chatham Rise seabed, saying they wouldn’t diminish the project’s risk.

On the second day of a two-month hearing on Chatham Rock’s marine consent application, the Environmental Defence Society told the five-member decision-making committee it should be declined because the mining is likely to degrade the seabed environment and threaten endangered seabirds and marine mammals without strong enough mitigation measures in place.

Allowing the project to proceed would cut across other legislation which aimed to protect seabed ecosystems in benthic protection areas, and cumulative effects of the project need to be taken into account, EDS counsel Rob Enright said.

“The benthic protection areas are mitigation for the fishing…

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3 thoughts on “NZ: Eco groups criticise Chatham Rock plans for seabed mining

  1. Here in New Plymouth, we just defeated a proposal to mine the seabeds off Taranaki for iron sands. The Environmental Protection Authority ruled that the proposal totally underestimated the destructive effective the underwater plume would have on all sea life.

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