Current expedition: Biodiverse Borderlands
The deep sea hosts minerals that contain high quantities of elements that are valuable for human societies. Countries around the world are preparing to develop extractive practices for deep-sea minerals, and baseline biological data are needed to further assess the life that may dwell on or around minerals in different benthic environments. To examine the trade-offs associated with any potential mineral extraction, Drs. Lisa Levin, Paul Jensen, and Greg Rouse from Scripps and Kira Mizell from the US Geological Survey will venture to the Southern California Borderland (SCB) to investigate several sites where marine minerals are known or expected to occur and assess the biological communities living amongst the mineral substrates. The team’s goal is to establish mineral and biological baselines, examine conditions that may influence biodiversity and inspect the therapeutic potential of deep-sea microbes affiliated with mineral-rich areas. The knowledge gained from this expedition will inform policy, management, and stewardship of the deep sea off southern California.
More information on the research cruise page.