Minerals, and the metals they contain, are an essential component of the modern high-tech world. Global stocks of raw mineral resources continue to dwindle in absolute terms, leading to increased pressures to access previously unattainable mineral deposits - including those lying at the bottom of the ocean.

The SPC-EU DSM Project aims at providing technical assistance to the 15 Pacific-ACP States, with a focus on supporting them to develop and implement comprehensive policy and legislative frameworks as a means to ensure that deep sea mining is a viable economic option they could efficiently utilize to meet development goals as well as strengthen national independence and autonomy. To this end, it is of critical importance to ensure that the environmental and social risk associated with deep sea activities are not only properly identified and assessed but also, managed in a sustainable manner.

 As part of its capacity-building objective, and following the success of the Legal Internship Scheme, the Project is now initiating an Environmental Internship Scheme.  

The aim of this scheme is to build a sustainable source of in-country environmental expertise, as the interns are encouraged to return to their country to work with national authorities involved in deep sea minerals activities.

As a result, this scheme will provide a 2 month internship position with the Project at the Geoscience Division (AGTD), SPC, Suva. Interested applicants should have graduated in the fields of environment, marine studies or other applicable disciplines. Priority will be given to applicants from the participating countries who are under a bond that requires them to work for their government after completing their studies.

Environment Interns will be working closely with the Project’s Environment Advisor in delivering the Key Result Areas.

 Position Description

The successful candidate will:

  • assist Project Environment Advisor in his/her work including the development of Project related publications;
  • undertake environmental research tasks;
  • draft file notes, discussion papers, information brochures and summaries;
  • provide proof-reading and editing assistance to Project documents;
  • correspond with relevant stakeholders;
  • attend meetings, teleconferences and web conferences;
  • assist with any other ad hoc tasks arising.

 The successful candidate will be efficient, hard-working, enthusiastic and must possess superior research abilities and excellent written and oral communication skills.

 Internship Sessions

8 Internships will be offered as follows:

Mid June – Mid August 2015

Mid August – Mid October 2015

Mid October – Mid December 2015

Start January – End February 2016


How to Apply

Applications should include:

  • CV
  • Cover letter explaining:

-   which member country you are from – are you on bond to the government?

-   why you are interested in this position?

-   what you consider you could bring to the role?

-   your preferred internship date, and second preference.


For any enquiries on the Environment Internship Scheme, please contact: Ms Vira Atalifo, DSM Project Support Officer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 Environment Government Official


Name: Cardinia Funganitao
Nationality: Tonga
Trainee Duration: 25 August-4 September 2015
Background: Cardinia graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Law and Geography from the University of the South Pacific and is currently the Assistant Geologist for the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources Division in Tonga. She spent two weeks with the DSM Project, undertaking training on the environmental management of deep sea minerals. Her task included producing a report summarizing all publications and data on deep sea minerals marine scientific research (MSR) and exploration in Tonga’s EEZ to date. This information can be used to assist Tonga to characterize their deep sea environment and inform MSR and Exploration Licensing and future marine management



 Environment Interns

Name: Nancy Defe
Nationality: Solomon Islands
Duration: 30 March-5 June 2015
Background: Nancy completed a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from the University of the South Pacific before joining the Project as the 3rd Environment Intern. During her internship, she conducted a literature review on deep sea minerals studies undertaken in the Solomon Islands. She also assisted with research for the Regional Environment Management Framework (REMF) for Deep Sea Mineral Activities, and an information brochure on Cobalt-rich Crusts.




Name: Ms Naomi Coalala
Nationality: Fiji
Duration: 27 January-31 March 2015
Background: Naomi graduated from the University of Porto in Portugal, with a Masters in Environmental Science in 2013. She joined the Project as the 2nd Environment Intern. During her internship, her main tasks included providing content for the DSM Projects website, researching and drafting text for the Regional Environment Management Framework and she has begun drafting a brochure on Cobalt-rich Crusts’ environments. “The internship allowed me to work on numerous tasks that will contribute to my professional development. I really enjoyed learning from the DSM Project. This experience has opened my eyes to the importance of international and regional co-operation in promoting environmental sustainability.”




Name: Mr Melino Bain-Vete

Duration: November – December 2014

Nationality: Fiji/Tonga

Mr Bain Vete was awarded the first Environment internship for the DSM Project last year.As an environment intern worked closely with the Project's   Environment Advisor Ms Alison Swaddling on tasks including the development of Project related publications , and environmental    research tasks also undertaking other ad hoc tasks for the DSM Project.

Background: Melino is a graduate of Dartmouth College, USA where he majored in Geography and minored in French in 2012 and in 2013 completed his Masters in Environmental Law and Sustainable Development focusing on Natural Resource, Intellectual Property and Climate Change  & Policy from London University. Melino was recruited as a legal and environment intern where he completed the first draft of Fiji's Offshore Minerals Policy and the Brochure on Environment and Biology associated with Manganese Nodules including other legal research tasks.