Increased focus on Marine Minerals
GCE Ocean Technology will increase our focus on marine minerals. Working closer together is key for establishing a new sustainable ocean industry with huge export potential.
The Norwegian Ministry of petroleum and energy set the programme for the impact assessment related to seabed minerals earlier this autumn and the decision concerning the opening is currently planned in Q2 of 2023.
More information and studies related to the opening process for mineral activities on the Norwegian continental shelf can be found at the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate webpage.
Accelerating the Energy Transition
Marine minerals have been a key part of our strategy since 2015.
– We have concluded that the timing is right to boost our efforts. Minerals are key for the energy transition, says Owe Hagesæther CEO of GCE Ocean Technology.
The IEA estimates a quadrupling of minerals required to meet the sustainable development scenario by 2040. The growing demand is driven by the growth in renewable energy and batteries. As demands grows significant, recycling can only meet a small part of the total demand.
– Our hypothesis is that marine minerals, due to its higher ore grade, will come with a smaller environmental and climate footprint than land-based mining. Yes, there are still many questions to be answered before we can conclude. These questions are best answered by working closer together in a cluster across disciplines and organisations, says Hagesæther.
Many Activities in the Pipeline
GCE Ocean Technology have the key players in the cluster to accelerate the joint knowledge gathering to better understand the deep-sea environment, its ecosystem and resources.
Some examples of next year’s seminars and activities are:
- Marine Minerals – Market Outlook
- Knowledge status - Impact assessment
- Accelerating deep sea exploration
- International possibility and activities
To meet future EU taxonomy and sustainability goals, we need to prove that future mining can be done without significant harm to the environment. As part of proving this, we will work on Environmental, Social and Governmental (ESG) aspects related to this as an emerging industry.
We will take active part in the Eco-Safe Ridge Mining project over the next three years, where we will contribute with dissemination of results and interaction with a wider group of the cluster members.
Furthermore, GCE Ocean Technology is currently involved in an EU application targeting monitoring and supervision systems for exploration and future exploitation activities in the deep sea. Several of our cluster partners are currently involved in this proposal.
Clusters are a Highly Efficient Tool
About 70 precent of Norway’s exports comes from the ocean industries. The government clearly states that the activity level on the Norwegian continental shelf shall remain at the same high level even if oil and gas activities go down. This will require a huge investment in, and upscaling of, new ocean industries.
An evaluation of the industry-oriented public funding schemes performed in 2019 pointed out, that the cluster programme and collaboration projects are highly relevant and cost-efficient tools.
– GCE Ocean Technology will increase our focus on marine mineral and continue to be a driving force in the transition into new and growing ocean industries to develop new export-oriented jobs and sustainable value creation, Hagesæther ends.
GCE Ocean Technology has taken an active role in the investigation of the possibility to establishing a new industry within marine minerals.
The cluster has hosted several seminar and conferences as well as established large spin-off project to develop the industry.
GCE Ocean Technology will increase our focus and offerings to the cluster within marine minerals in the coming years.
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