Q&A: International Seabed Authority Secretary-General Michael Lodge

By Jordan Wolman | 03/27/2024 06:41 AM EDT

Lodge is steering global negotiations on what would be the world’s first regulatory framework for deep-sea mining in international waters.

International Seabed Authority. Photo credit:

The International Seabed Authority meets. @ISBAHQ/Twitter

Michael Lodge is leading the world through uncharted waters.

As secretary-general of the U.N.’s International Seabed Authority, Lodge is steering negotiations on what would be the first international regulatory framework for deep-sea mining of minerals critical to the green transition, defense and electronics.

After failing to reach agreement last year, the ISA returned to negotiations this month with the hopes of clinching a deal at the next negotiating session in Kingston, Jamaica, in July.


Still, the ISA is grappling with a wide range of opinions on the controversial new industry: U.S. allies including France, Germany, Canada and the U.K. are among 24 countries opposing deep-sea mining, while Norway and Japan are among nations taking steps to mine waters within their jurisdiction.