Threats to Marine Ecosystems and Conservation of the Marine Environment

This collection of articles focusses on SDG 14 (life below water). Every coastal State, including several members of G20, face threats to marine ecosystems and the environment as complex societal, economic and governance challenges. Ocean management involves multi-disciplinary science and complex issues of policy design, while implementation demands consultative decision making and long term capacity development. In order to achieve sustainable development and conservation goals, we must improve the integration of science into marine policy, whilst achieving social and economic inclusivity and diversity. From coastal systems where human activities are layered in ocean space, to remote oceanic systems, management faces complex challenges in identifying and quantifying  trade-offs between conservation and sectoral interests.

In this special collection, we have selected articles published in Elsevier’s peer-reviewed journals that showcase the current issues of marine environment and policies. Topics that are covered include marine pollution, climate change impact on ocean, UN Sustainable Development Goals, coastal management, fisheries management and high seas governance, with several articles dedicated to highlighting the latest scientific developments on these issues from Japan. The articles were selected in consultation with ocean experts of the Nippon Foundation Nereus Program, an interdisciplinary global research network.

Elsevier, Marine Policy, Volume 96, October 2018
This study reports plastic debris pollution in the deep-sea based on the information from a recently developed database. The Global Oceanographic Data Center (GODAC) of the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) launched the Deep-sea Debris Database for public use in March 2017. The database archives photographs and videos of debris that have been collected since 1983 by deep-sea submersibles and remotely operated vehicles. From the 5010 dives in the database, 3425 man-made debris items were counted.