Deep Sea Mining [Down the Rabbit Hole Minisode 10]

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This week we’re digging deep on why we maybe shouldn’t be digging into the depths of the ocean.

Olivia covers the basics of deep sea mining, the potential “climate bomb” that could be set in July, and how we can amplify the work of activists and experts calling for a moratorium.

Action Items:

  • Keep an eye out for news about deep sea mining and the International Seabed Authority (See links below for reputable sources!)
  • Follow #LookDown and @look_Down_Action and check their Linktree to keep up with actions and initiatives, specifically in countries that are close to signing on to the moratorium, like Mexico and Switzerland.


Leader of International Seabed Mining Agency Admonished by Diplomats, New York Times, March 19, 2023

Camille Etienne & Lucas Bravo Instagram video for the #LookDown campaign
Oceanographer Sylvia Earle on the Dangers of Deep-Sea Mining, NowThis Earth, March 4, 2021
Should We Mine the Deep-Sea?, How to Save a Planet, October 2022
A farewell from the Editor: It’s science fiction, until it isn’t., DSM Observer
International Seabed Authority
Marine Expert Statement Calling for a Pause to Deep-Sea Mining

More on Nauru:
Secret Data, Tiny Islands and a Quest for Treasure on the Ocean Floor, New York Times, August 30, 2022
Meet Nauru, Once the World’s Richest Island, Now With 90% Unemployment, The Atlantic, June 17, 2011

In short, experts agree that too little is known about the dangers of seabed mining for it to proceed safely, while a growing number assert that its risks vastly outweigh its potential benefits. The world’s clean-energy needs can be met with land-based mining, they argue, or better yet through technological innovation and dramatically improved recycling infrastructure that could significantly reduce the need for most mining in the first place. 

Deep-sea mining could begin next year. Here’s why ocean experts are calling for a moratorium, Grist, March 2022

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Thanks for listening!

Ep. 74 – Burning Questions Part II World Is Burning

Can you believe we've gone 2 1/2 years without creating our very own game show about us? Neither can we! Test your climate knowledge alongside us as we ask ourselves the burning questions: Where are tumbleweeds from? What are our favorite climate activists' favorite insects? and How do you do fractions again? Subscribe/follow/press the button to keep up with new episodes every Wednesday! You can also follow us @worldisburnin on Instagram and Twitter or @worldisburning on TikTok, and check out our website for extended show notes including sources and photos. World Is Burning is hosted by Olivia Hamilton and Elise Nye. Our theme music is by Kaycie Satterfield, and our logo was made by Sonja Katanic. — Send in a voice message:
  1. Ep. 74 – Burning Questions Part II
  2. Ep 73 – Burning Questions
  3. Ep. 72 – It’s A Joke Until It’s Not – the Overton Window and AI
  4. Ep. 71 – Oil Spills – Deepwater Horizon and Dawn Dish Soap
  5. Ep. 70 – Deep Sea Explorers – Jacques Cousteau & Dr. Sylvia Earle