Fossil oil – commonly dubbed the “Black Gold” – is quickly losing its sparkle as countries and companies turn their back on the sticky fuel over concerns about climate change and environmental pollution. And it increasingly looks like the blue economy is ready to take over!
At the end of 2020, the European Commission already announced its plans to turn offshore renewables (wind, waves, tidal…) into one of the main energy sources for the EU, dethroning the fossil fuel sector for good. But also for the other applications – and matching problems – of petroleum, blue solutions are in the making.
In this episode of Ocean, we are zooming in on EU-supported projects that help solve the problem of plastic marine pollution caused by derelict fishing and aquaculture gear. Every year, around 640,000 tons of fishing equipment are lost or abandoned in oceans and seas. They remain there for hundreds of years – catching and killing marine life, and polluting the underwater environment. In addition, the growing offshore aquaculture sector relies on ropes made from 100% petrol-based, non-biodegradable plastic that also threaten marine ecosystems.
We’ll discover how the blue economy is moving from being part of the problem to becoming part of the solution. Our reporter takes us to three coastal cities in Spain where researchers, fishers and aquaculture producers work together finding ways to reduce the plastic threat. The BIOGEARS project is developing eco-friendly biodegradable ropes for use in mussel and seaweed culture, while the OCEANETS project develops tools to prevent loss of fishing nets at sea, and tests a pilot plant to recycle recovered fishing gears into high quality polyamide yarn that can be used for the production of sports gear.
Is Blue the new Black? See for yourselves and tune in to Euronews from 27 April @ 20:50 CET – on any platform.
OCEAN is a Euronews magazine in collaboration with the Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (MARE). Season 3 features monthly 8-minute videos where we highlight fascinating projects and developments related to the ocean and coastal communities.
The first two seasons featured episodes on marine protected areas, small-scale fisheries, ocean energy, aquaculture, IUU fishing, sustainable fisheries and more. Missed one? Check them out on Euronews website! You will also find some nice extras about these topics.
Euronews Ocean: Reducing plastic in fishing and aquaculture: what alternatives to protect our oceans?
Seabed litter (European Atlas of the Seas)
- Publication date
- 27 April 2021
- Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries