Norway is in an excellent position to become a leader in the exploration for deep sea minerals.
The search for deep sea minerals is strongly inspired by the energy transition and the consequential need to explore and exploit the potential for critical metals.
The three major deep sea mineral deposits that have excited commercial interests include 1) Seafloor Massive Sulphides (SMS), 2) Manganese Nodules and 3) Cobalt-rich Crusts.
The types of mineral resources used in green energy production and electrification vary by technology and purpose, with the main ones being copper, nickel, cobalt, lithium and manganese, in addition to rare earth elements.
This is the backdrop against which the Norwegian government embarked on a risk assessment study that is part of the opening process for mineral activities on the Norwegian continental shelf (geo365.no: “Sikter mot 2023”).
Read also: The Deep Sea: A Potential “Copper Mine”
As exploring for deep sea mineral resources is now imminent, GeoPublishing has taken the initiative to host an international conference on October 20 and 21 this year concerning – among other key topics – the need for critical minerals. If circumstances allow, the conference will take place as a physical event in Bergen, Norway.
The programme is now complete and comprises eight sessions and will give a comprehensive overview on the status of exploration for deep sea minerals world-wide, international research, formation and distribution, social and environmental challenges, mineral resources inventory and exploration technology. There will also be presentations from companies intending to take part in the very first licensing round.