Hydrothermal Vent Mining Is Almost A Thing

Deep sea hydrothermal vents, home to exotic forms of life that exist nowhere else on earth, are very close to being commercially mined for precious and rare-earth metals. This could have profound effects on the isolated ecosystems surrounding the vents, some of which have existed for millennia.

Image: Hoff Crabs photographed by the ROV ISIS/NERC

Via Southern Fried Science.