Although not yet commercially practiced, deep-sea mining is under development for metalliferous sediments, massive sulphides and polymetallic nodules. Ore extraction is to be achieved by sediment suction, rock cutting and nodule collection, and transport from the seafloor to the mining platform is planned to be carried out by airlifting up the water - ore slurry. Water, accompanying particulate matter and dissolved substances comprising the fluid-particle mixture tailings, is to be ejected back into the ocean. Environmental studies for impact evaluation were conducted for water column and seafloor effects. This paper concentrates on the fluid tailings and their discharge back into the sea. We also address potential environmental effects of large-scale environmental impact experiments in due time before industry conducts pilot mining operations, as well as the disposal of mud and concrete tailings, the processing wastes.
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Tailings and their Disposal in Deep-Sea Mining
Paper presented at the Tenth ISOPE Ocean Mining and Gas Hydrates Symposium, Szczecin, Poland, September 2013.
Paper Number: ISOPE-M-13-089
Published: September 22 2013
Schriever, Gerd , and Hjalmar Thiel. " Tailings and their Disposal in Deep-Sea Mining" Paper presented at the Tenth ISOPE Ocean Mining and Gas Hydrates Symposium, Szczecin, Poland, September 2013.
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