Why is deep sea mining the next battleground in the energy transformation?

Why is deep sea mining the next battleground in the energy transformation?

Growing demand for the metals used in electric vehicle batteries has triggered an international race for deep-sea mining. There are no other rules.

On Sunday, the International Seabed Authority missed a key deadline for setting up a regulatory framework, meaning companies can now apply for licenses before the rules are final. Representatives from the agency, which is made up of 167 member states and the European Union, have gathered in Jamaica for two weeks to debate what should happen next.

Canada, France, Germany and other countries want to stop deep-sea mining because of the largely unknown environmental consequences. But countries including China, Norway and Russia are moving forward on setting up a framework they argue is less destructive than land mining.

Meanwhile, seawater harnessing enterprises are eager to get started.

“We are preparing our application,” said Gerard Barron, chief executive of Metals Co., a Canadian business that has entered into an agreement with the Pacific island nation of Nauru to sponsor its deep-sea mining efforts.

The company preferred to have final rules before acting, Mr. Barone told DealBook, “but we reserve the right to move forward.”

There is pressure on regulators to act. A united nations conference Establishes waters more than 12 nautical miles from a territorial coast as community property, meaning that profits from minerals discovered there must be shared to some degree. The ISA is responsible for establishing a framework for profit-sharing and taxation of mining efforts, as well as legal and ecological guidelines. or it could ban large-scale commercial mining altogether – although that’s It is not clear that there is a legal way to break,

mining may cause damage to ecosystems that scientists do not yet understand, said Jessica Battle, ocean policy specialist at the World Wildlife Fund. For example, a study published Tuesday in the journal Nature argued that mining the ocean floor could interfere with tuna migration patterns. Climate change drives fish to new waters, Ms. Battelle is leading an effort to get businesses to pledge not to finance marine mining or source seabed materials in their supply chains. More than 30 companies, including BMW, Google, Samsung, Volvo and Volkswagen have signed, Similarly, major banks in uksuch as Lloyds and standard Chartered, refusing to do business with deep sea mining entities. and seafood industry groups have sought an adjournment,

Some are also skeptical of the economic opportunity. It is expected that by 2030, about 35 percent of the cars sold globally will be electric vehicles. up from 14 percent in 2022, according to International Energy Agency estimates, That growth will drive demand for metals such as cobalt, copper and nickel used in batteries. But critics say the expense and logistics of mining in the remote ocean – and bringing the metals back to land – raise doubts about whether deep-sea mining can be carried out be profitable, Ms Battle argued other solutions were in the works – such as Alternative content and programs for reusing and recycling batteries – can adequately meet demand for critical metals. About deep-sea mining, he said, “This industry can start even without a need.”

but sea mining supporters Tell Existing mining is worse for the environment, and deep-sea mining could help wrest control of critical metals from China and Russia. Some also see it as an economic lifeline for small island nations facing the worst effects of climate change.

“Don’t tell me to overlook the potential to fuel the green transition by not finding these much-needed minerals for the green revolution that exist in our ocean,” Cook Islands Prime Minister Mark Brown told a UN climate conference. Last year. He called “protectionist” claims of environmental concern from countries destroying the planet “through decades of profit-driven development”.

Mr Barron of The Metals Company, who was in Jamaica for the ISA meetings this week, pointed out that some of the countries seeking the moratorium also have exploration licences, which allow them to use small-scale mining for research purposes . whether they believe representatives are making decisions Deep sea mining may start, but when. “That horse has jumped,” he said. – Efrat Livni

A bumpy week for Leena Khan. The head of the FTC lost a bid to block Microsoft’s $70 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, launched the first major investigation into OpenAI over ChatGPT’s privacy and security practices, and was questioned by a Republican-led congressional committee on his approach to the agency. done. The FTC lost its appeal against Microsoft’s decision.

Hollywood shut down. The actors voted to go on strike for the first time in 43 years, joining screenwriters who had already taken industrial action. Unions say they want better pay, higher fees from streaming services and protections to deal with new technological threats such as artificial intelligence. Studio owners say the demands are unrealistic at a time when the entire industry is being disrupted.

The details behind the PGA Tour-LIV golf talks. New details about the negotiations emerged at a Senate hearing on a possible deal between the rival golf competitions: the agreement was announced before its completion; The PGA Tour did not have the resources to fight the Saudi-backed LIV indefinitely; And governance is going to be an important part of any final deal.

The meeting ended on Shopify. Embedded Canadian e-commerce company The calculator In employee calendar apps that measure the financial cost of meetings with three or more people. This is the company’s latest effort to stop pointless gatherings. It had earlier canceled all recurring meetings of more than two people.

The spectacular tech stock rally is showing no signs of slowing, with the Nasdaq Composite hitting a 15-month high this week. One reason: Wall Street is betting that an improvement in the inflation outlook, as underscored by Wednesday’s consumer price index, will force the Federal Reserve to move to more accommodative rate policy, which tends to lift tech stocks.

How big has Big Tech become? Bank of America researchers ran the numbers this week. Here are three takeaways:

  • Stock gains this year have been particularly concentrated among seven companies: Apple, Microsoft, Alphabet, Amazon, Nvidia, Tesla and Meta.

  • The so-called Magnificent Seven have a combined market capitalization of nearly $11 trillion, a figure greater than the GDP of every country except the United States and China.

  • This year has seen the combined market capitalization of the conglomerates rise by $4 trillion.

  • Companies are cash-rich. Six of the seven (all except Amazon) have a combined net cash-to-debt balance of $200 billion.

what to watch: Large institutional investors have bought these stocks, which may sustain the rally in the near term. And interest rate risk is coming down for these companies. But the bigger they are, the more attention they can get from politicians.

“Political campaign rhetoric is likely to include key risks around regulation of megacap tech,” Savita Subramanian, head of US equities and quantitative strategy at Bank of America, wrote in the report.

Health officials have waged a war against obesity for years. Now, in an effort to stem the growth of large cars like SUVs and cut pollution, Paris has declared war on “auto-busity.” Its first step is to charge drivers more to park Vehicles – a move that could ultimately affect car companies.

SUV use in Paris has increased by more than 60 percent in the past four years, according to city officials. This reflects a wider trend across the EU, which almost includes SUVs. half of all car sales across the block, up by about 14 percent in 2011, according to the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, an auto industry group.

Critics say it’s bad for the planet. ,We want the City of Paris to make it progressive by changing the price of paid parking according to the weight and size of vehicles. Frederic Badina-SerpeteThe city councilor told The Guardian the reason behind the inflated charges. He further stated that it was intended to “focus on an absurdity: auto-basity.” …a wild increase in the weight and size of the vehicles plying in our cities.”

The new rules will increase the concerns of car manufacturers. Details have not been revealed, but electric vehicles and large families that require large vehicles are expected to be exempt. there will be higher tariffs It will take effect from January 1 and could inspire similar moves in other big cities.

“France has traditionally been one of the most aggressive countries in combating the development of large cars,” independent auto analyst Mathias Schmidt told DealBook. Stellantis chief executive Carlos Tavares has already been pressing the French government to do more to support the industry, which is starting to feel the effects of Tesla’s price cuts and poised to enter Europe Faced with the growing threat of Chinese car makers. French brands, Mr. Schmidt said, “are in the middle of an uncomfortable sandwich, hemmed in from above and below.”

“Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One”, the latest installment of Tom Cruise’s efforts to transcend physics for entertainment, is predictable earn $90 million In his first five days, a franchise record. (Mild spoilers ahead.)

But the film also shows how hype about artificial intelligence is spreading into pop culture: the big bad guy in the film is the Entity, a rogue artificial intelligence program that poses a threat to humanity.

For decades, humans’ relationship with artificial intelligence has been explored by movies like “2001: A Space Odyssey,” “Ex Machina” and yes, “AI,” but last year saw the public debut of ChatGPT, which has intrigued many. Gave him his first chance. Interacting with AI has reduced dreams of sentient technology to the sound of science fiction and, for some, existential dread.

Remember how in May over 350 AI experts called for “reducing the risk of extinction from AI”? unit is Qualified “Demolishing the world’s economic systems, evading national-security protocols, and reprogramming nuclear weapons.” At least in the movies, an almost superhuman secret agent can outwit killer technology. (We agree; it is a Cruise movie, after all.) In real life, it could take Coordination by lawmakers around the world – And time will tell if that mission is… Well, you know.

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