Species threatened by deep-sea mining

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Mushroom soft coral with feeding polyps extended on the Davidson Seamount, at 1,470m below. Some deep sea corals can live for several thousand years, making them the oldest organisms on the planet. (NOAA)
Mushroom soft coral with feeding polyps extended on the Davidson Seamount, at 1,470m below. Some deep sea corals can live for several thousand years, making them the oldest organisms on the planet. (NOAA)

Ned Pennant-Rea for chinadialogue ocean | 28 February 2019

The UN has described the deep sea as “the largest source of species and ecosystem diversity on Earth.” Life thrives particularly on the vast expanses of sea floor known as abyssal plains, amid the submarine mountains that rise from them and around superheated springs. Extremes of temperature and pressure have proved no obstacle to the creatures here. But plans to commercially mine the seabed pose a grave threat to their survival.

Abyssal plains, the flattest places on the planet, are home to fish, eels, crustaceans, molluscs, sponges, sea cucumbers, starfish and brittle stars to name a few.

Read the full article here: Species threatened by deep-sea mining.