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Controversy erupts over deep sea mining as world rushes to finalize vital rules | Wednesday



Michael Lodge, a British lawyer and head of the UN-linked body responsible for managing high seas mining, has come under fire from diplomats who say he is pushing them to speed up the start of deep sea mining.

The German diplomat said that Lodge – secretary general of the International Seabed Authority (ISA) – has an obligation to remain neutral and has stepped over his role in resisting measures put forward by some council members that could slow the approval of the first mining proposals. according to the New York Times.

Also, in a tweet with a link to this story Gina Guillen Grillo, Costa Rica’s representative to the Seabed Authority, said yesterday: “Member States should govern the International Seabed Authority. Decisions should come from them and should not be imposed by those with only administrative duties. Seabed mining cannot be rushed [because] economic interests of the few.

Lodge’s criticism came at a pivotal moment as the authority is expected to receive a commercial seabed mining bid later this year. The authority that meeting in Jamaica this weekis still writing the rules that will govern this process.

Germany and Costa Rica join a growing number of countries, including France, Spain, Chile, New Zealand and several Pacific countries, that have recently said they do not believe there is enough data to assess the impact of mining on marine life. They called for a “precautionary pause” or a ban on mining on the high seas.

Lodge has previously suggested that deep sea mining has environmental impacts:predictable and manageable“.

German government sent a letter to the Lodge last week, expressing his concern. In a letter, Franziska Brantner, German Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Change, said: “It is not the task of the secretariat to interfere in the decision-making process. In the past, you have actively opposed positions and proposals for decision-making from individual delegations.”

Brantner added that the German government was “seriously concerned about this approach.”

In reply to Brantner the next day, Lodge described these complaints as “a bold and unsubstantiated assertion, without facts or evidence.”

Lodge said it was his job to ensure that authorities respect the “legal framework” of maritime law. He said that his opening remarks on March 8 “did not refer to any specific proposal by any delegation” but were fully in line with “the competencies recognized for me” and that it would be false to assume that he had taken opposite positions in the past against proposals delegates. . “This is not true and I reject such an unfounded accusation,” he said. He asked the German delegation to respect him and his staff and “not try to influence them in the performance of their duties.”

Lodge made a statement to the New York Times, saying that he attaches “high importance to the conservation and protection of the marine environment” and that he works “to ensure that decision-making processes relating to deep seabed economic activity are based on the best available scientific knowledge” .

The row is a measure of growing tension over who controls the agency, amid pressure from some UN countries to slow ocean production while others want it to continue.

Duncan Currie, international legal adviser to the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition and an official observer at the March 8 meeting, told the Guardian: “This is not just a row between diplomats. It is very important. The executive body is the council. The administrative body should not tell the council what decisions it should make.”

The controversy has escalated in recent months due to Metallurgical companyCanadian mining startup has said it intends to apply for permission this year to start mining as early as 2024.

The small Pacific island nation of Nauru is one of three nations that sponsor The Metals Company, along with the Kingdom of Tonga and the Republic of Kiribati. in 2021, Nauru introduced a two-year rule this obliges ISA to finalize and adopt commercial mining rules by July 2023.

According to the memorandum sent out by the Republic of Nauru, if the ISA has not completed the development of the rules within the deadline and a mining application has been submitted, then the authorities must “nevertheless review and pre-approve” it, allowing mining to continue. .

However, some authorities believe that the agency is not required to approve the application from The Metals Company and Nauru until the rules are finalized.

On March 8, the diplomats were convened for a virtual meeting to discuss what to do if a mining claim is indeed submitted this year. According to the New York Times, some delegates have proposed changes to the permitting process that would strengthen the council’s ability to block mining.

However, according to a copy of his prepared remarks Lodge warned delegates not to change established procedures. “It would be dangerous to upset this balance,” he said. “We have to let the system work the way it’s meant to work.”

Lodge said he did not intend to challenge any delegation’s proposals. But his remarks were received that way by Germany, Costa Rica and France, according to the New York Times.

An ISA spokesman told the Guardian: “The role of the secretariat is not to pass judgment on the positions of member states, but to facilitate negotiations and ensure that discussions are based on the best available science and in accordance with the United Nations Convention. on the law of the sea and the 1994 agreement. The Secretariat is fulfilling this mission carefully, thoughtfully and to the best of its ability.”

The spokesman added: “The regulation will only be approved if ISA members reach consensus on its content. At the same time, only exploration activities will be allowed.”


Claude Lorius: French climate change pioneer dies at 91



His expeditions to Antarctica helped prove that humans are responsible for global warming.

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ASUS Super Silent RTX 4080 goes on sale




The RTX 4080 is a great graphics card, but is there a way to make it even better? It turns out there is: with a pair of reliable, silent fans, this can be a real treat. This is exactly what ASUS has done in partnership with Noctua, and now you can buy the result of this partnership.

The RTX 4080 Noctua OC was announced back in January during CES 2023. Its biggest selling point? It has a world class cooling system where a pair of brown Noctua fans are the star of the show. Noctua’s fans are known for being some of the best you can buy for your computer – they’re pricey, but they’re really high quality, which more than makes up for it. Noctua already had a partnership with ASUS for the RTX 3070 and RTX 3080 – it was just extended to the newer and more powerful RTX 4080.

ASUS RTX 4080 Noctua OC Edition

This special version of the NVIDIA RTX 4080 graphics card uses Noctua fans to keep it as quiet as possible, but it comes at a price.

Middle Noctua’s experience with air-cooling your graphics card may not produce a decent result, but it is effective. Early reviews from sites like TechPowerUp noted that this version of the RTX 4080 is indeed very quiet and also quite power efficient, and also performs well in games with low temperatures.

The only problem? His price. This card costs a whopping $1,649, almost the same as a water-cooled RTX 4090 or 4080. For the price, you get the very best air cooling, but it comes at a price, so you should discuss if it’s worth it for you.

sources: ASUS

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Zebrafish seem to be able to count when they are only four days old.



Zebrafish appear to have numerical ability at a very early age.

Perspective / Alamy Stock Photo

Zebrafish larvae may have some primitive ability to count just a few days after hatching.

Several animals, including honey bees and salamanders, they have been shown to have some form of number skill. For example, laboratory experiments show that rhesus monkeys can count to six.

Counting ability has also been seen in very young people: one study found that number sense in 6-month-olds was associated with best scores in math tests three years later.

Tyrone Lucon-Hikkato V …

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