As new technologies create a growing demand for metals and minerals, mining companies and governments are demonstrating a growing interest in exploring the potential commercial benefits arising from seabed resources such as seafloor massive sulphides, manganese nodules and cobalt-rich crusts. However, the deep-sea ocean floor is home to a diversity of marine life which is critical to the health of the ocean and marine environment on which many Pacific livelihoods depend.
In order to raise awareness of emerging environmental threats within the Pacific island region, the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), on an invitation from the Samoa Ministry of Justice, hosted a luncheon event for delegates to the Pacific Judicial Conference. The event was held in Apia at the Sheraton Aggies Resort on Tuesday 25th September, 2018 and was attended by over 80 Pacific judges.
The presentation underlined the importance of adopting proper environmental management and planning processes supported by appropriate policy tools such as Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA). The conveyed key messages were well received by the judges and SPREP was acknowledged for its continued work in the area of environmental monitoring and governance, particularly on capacity training and awareness-raising on EIA as a tool for improved decision making.