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Human activity is powering ‘a new industrial revolution’ at sea, say experts

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on The Guardian or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: A groundbreaking study by Global Fishing Watch, using AI and satellite technology, has created the first global map of industrial ocean use 
• The study, published in Nature, reveals that 75% of the world's industrial fishing vessels, mostly in Africa and South Asia, operate without public tracking 
•  It also indicates significant growth in offshore structures, especially wind turbines, which surpassed oil structures in 2021

🔭 The context: The research, conducted between 2017 and 2021, showed that there was a 12% global decrease in fishing due to the Covid pandemic 
•  However, it highlighted a rapid increase in offshore structures, with China's offshore wind energy growing ninefold 
•  The study also uncovers illegal activities, such as "dark" fishing vessels in protected areas like the Great Barrier Reef and the Galápagos Islands

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: This study sheds light on the hidden industrialization of oceans, raising concerns about its impact on marine ecosystems 
•  The detection of "dark" vessels in critical marine reserves points to potential illegal fishing and environmental threats 
•  The growth in offshore wind energy, while beneficial for renewable energy, also poses new challenges for marine conservation

⏭️ What's next: The data and mapping technology from this study will be openly available, heralding a new era in ocean management and transparency 
•  This could aid in monitoring greenhouse gas emissions at sea and tracking marine degradation due to activities like oil pollution

💬 One quote: "A new industrial revolution has been emerging in our seas undetected – until now," (David Kroodsma, the director of research and innovation at GFW)

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