EcoLogical Marine


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Protecting ocean predators

Recent research on global shark and ray landings highlighted Sri Lanka among several countries that have suffered the greatest declines over the last decade. Reading the findings caused me to cast my mind back to my own experience in that country almost exactly a year ago. Dawn had broken at the Negombo market, and most […]

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Protecting the best of the Mediterranean

As a marine scientist and conservationist I have traveled and worked around the world. My work has allowed me to explore spectacular places and meet brilliant, hard-working people. But there’s nothing quite like working to protect your home, and that’s why I came back to the Mediterranean. The Mediterranean Sea has provided food and enabled […]

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When “sharks” protect fish

Everyone has heard the jokes about lawyers and sharks. But this month, lawyers became fish’s best friends. In 2013, a West African fisheries commission asked the International Tribunal of the Law of the Sea for clarity on four questions. These questions focused on the responsibilities of states that license fishing vessels and the recourse available […]

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No need to wait for action on oceans

After four days and a hard night of negotiations, governments meeting at the UN last week took a historic step toward ending the centuries-long free for all on the high seas. We have the green light to negotiate the first major UN treaty for 30 years, and we can now look to a future in […]

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When any news is good news for oceans

The New York Times last week ran a story on the front page about the threat of mass extinction in the ocean. For those of us who work on ocean conservation, this recent study is an interesting synthesis of the distressingly familiar data on decimated fisheries, bycatch and habitat destruction. But to be a front […]

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Empty seas

Overfishing threatens food security and economic development in Malaysia. A planned marine park could help return the empty sea to health. I like fish. I have spent my career protecting them and the places where they live. I also like to eat them. I want to see healthy fisheries provide food and jobs for people […]

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What’s happening with your polymetallic nodules?

Polymetallic nodules. Polymetallic sulphides. Cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts. These words are unlikely to make into small talk at the pub or around the dinner table. So why do they matter? They matter because these are valuable resources. They matter because they are your resources, even though you’ll probably never see them. And they matter because companies […]

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When the riches of the land run out

Can environmental safeguards prevent the worst effects of deep-sea mining? Until fairly recently, the deep seabed has remained relatively untouched, its inaccessibility protecting it from human interference. But ingenuity driven by opportunity to turn a profit has begun to solve the problem of how to explore and exploit the ocean’s most remote resources. What’s down […]

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The rhetoric is right, now we need action

It’s been a big month for the ocean and people who depend on it. We have new FAO guidelines that aim to protect the rights of small-scale fishers and ensure their contributions are included in management plans. This is an important step in safeguarding the livelihoods and food security of coastal communities. Actor and conservation […]

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