ARTYKUŁY INFORMACYJNE Blue mining na Atlantyku – realna potrzeba czy potrzeba realizmu?

Stanisław Wołkowicz, Andrzej Paulo


Blue mining in the Atlantic Ocean – a real need or a need for realism?
A b s t r a c t. In 2018, Poland was granted the right to explore for ores in the area of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge area of 10 000 km2, which is the initial stage of the Program of Geological Exploration of Oceans (PRoGeO) accepted by the Government of Poland in July 2017. On the part of decision-makers, expectations are huge in ensuring safe deliveries of a number of metals (Cu, Au, Ag, Pt, REE, Ni, Co, Zn and Mo). The authors carried out a detailed analysis of the published results of research on similar objects in the exclusive economic zones of Japan and Papua New Guinea. Comparative analysis, covering geological-economic, organizational, financial, geo-environmental aspects reveals that in the Polish zone of the MAR one can expect to find rich, but relatively small deposits of Cu, Zn, Ag, and Au, which meet the needs of a small part of domestic demand for these metals in less than 2 years. The geological and economic analysis shows that there is no risk of a collapse of the supply market for these metals. On the other hand, the risk of organizational and financial failure of the oceanic research project was defined as very large. The authors do not deny the need to conduct basic oceanic research. On the contrary, such research should be carried out even if the economic goal is very distant in time and vaguely outlined. However, the method of preparing
and evaluating the program of such research should not differ from the standards adopted for serious research grants, so it should have an original character, be prepared by leading research centers in a given field and be thoroughly evaluated by independent experts. Then a wide discussion will be possible in the scientific community regarding the purposefulness, scope and costs of the work.

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