New Zealand reviews risk and benefits of seabed mining

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New Zealand will undertake a review of the risks and benefits of seabed mining and whether domestic regulation is needed.

Environment Minister David Parker said there was a range of strong views on seabed mining and a review would give New Zealanders a say on the issue.

"Concerns about the environmental impacts of seabed mining need to be considered, along with the potential role that minerals recovered by seabed mining could play in New Zealand's transition to a decarbonised economy," Mr Parker said in a statement on Friday.

Seabed mining is allowed in NZ but it has to be approved by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Although three projects have been proposed to the agency none has been given final clearance.

An increasingly contentious debate is happening over whether the world's seabeds should be mined for nickel and other green energy transition minerals.

Last October, NZ backed a conditional moratorium on seabed mining in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

"New Zealand's international position does not require the government to change its domestic approach to seabed mining but having backed a conditional moratorium, it is timely to examine our own regulatory settings," Mr Parker said.

Feedback and inquiry findings from the review would inform any regulatory changes, the government said.