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USGS CMG InfoBank: Harvesting Undersea Resources

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Comment: 20:25 - 21:17 (00:52)
Source: Annenberg/CPB Resources - Earth Revealed - 4. The Sea Floor
Keywords: oil, manganese, nodule, ecosystem, "mid-oceanic ridge", "Richard Hazlett"

Our transcription: But the technology required to harvest these undersea resources is forming, and as with offshore oil drilling, there are serious environmental concerns.
Companies have experimented with dredging the ocean bottom for manganese nodules using giant suction devices.
This has been successful enough to excite some commercial interest.
For example, in Hawaiian waters, harvesting ores off the mid-ocean ridge probably requires more care and is prohibitively expensive.
Then there are environmental concerns.
For example, if a mining operation were to ever start on a mid-ocean ridge, it could not help but destroy some of the fragile and spectacular ecosystem, which makes its habitat there.

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