Pacific Plunder

THE GUARDIAN – Fri 25 Jun 2021 21.00 BST

The extraction of valuable resources from across the Pacific has made companies billions but comes at a sometimes catastrophic cost.

illions of tonnes of minerals, fish and timber are extracted from Pacific island nations each year, generating massive profits for foreign multinationals. Across the region, mining, fishing and logging industries have shored up the budgets and stabilised the economies of Pacific countries, sometimes making and breaking governments.

Done well, these industries bring jobs to the Pacific and bring in much-needed revenue for development. But there are also cases where companies have started mining, logging and fishing projects without regard for environmental or social harms of the work they do. The region is covered in the scars of mining projects, deforestation and illegal fishing.

The Guardian has collected data from across the region to map what resources are being harvested from Pacific countries, where they end up, who these projects profit and who they harm. Over the next month, we will launch a series of reports and investigations that outline the impact of the resource extraction industry in the Pacific region – focusing on logging, mining, fishing, and the emerging industry of deep-sea mining.



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