Cameron pledges that the UK will be a leader in seabed mining

David Cameron, the Prime Minister of the UK, estimates that seabed mining could be worth as much as £40bn if the UK chose to pursue mining. In his speech he pledged to put Britain at the front of the international seabed mining industry because he believes it could have a huge impact on the British economy over the next few decades.

Despite his pledge to help increase the British economy with seabed mining, Cameron chose to have an American defence company actually start the drive to collect nickel, copper, and other earth minerals from the seabed. This created some critical comments as locals asked why he did not hire a UK company to handle the task.

China and Russia hold licences to ‘mine’ the ocean bed according to Cameron, but he believes that they have the skills, technology, and scientific know how to do so. He added that the fact that the UK is pursuing seabed mining shows that the UK is a prime player in the global race.

Cameron spoke at the Docklands at the Excel Center and also added that there are also talks being conducted with about 100 British companies about creating a potential supply chain. Despite this involvement most of the activity will still take place in America.

As a partnership with the UK Seabed Resources, the Department for Business, Innovation, and Skills was able to get a licence and contract out the exploration of about 58,000 sq km of seabed in the Pacific Ocean.

The area will be scooped up via a harvester that runs along the seabed. They are then broken up and if minerals are released they are captured by the harvester. The group also stated that the method they are using is much more environmentally safe then previous deep sea mining techniques that have drawn criticism.