The ghostly 600-year-old predators killing more than 100,000 whales, dolphins, seals and turtles a year
Lost and discarded fishing nets - some bigger than football pitches - are devastating marine life up to 600 years after they were abandoned. This week we’re pushing the fishing industry, businesses, and governments to address the deadly issue of ‘ghost gear’
Lost and discarded fishing nets, lines and traps, can take 600 years to decompose, as the majority of this ‘ghost gear’ is made of plastic.
Animals caught in this incredibly durable fishing gear can suffer prolonged and painful deaths, often suffocating or starving for months.
Governments and industry must act
As industry and political leaders gather at two key international summits this week (5-9 June), the United Nations Ocean Conference, and the Sea Food Summit, we’re calling on them to recognise the urgent need to join the Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) we lead.
We established the GGGI to find ways to reduce the amount of lost and abandoned fishing gear going into our oceans.
As animals continue to suffer from the effects of ghost gear, we need support from global leaders to rid our oceans of these floating death traps.
640,000 tonnes a year
The equivalent of 52,000 double decker buses full of fishing equipment is left in our oceans each year.
Devastating reports show that over 817 species of marine life are affected by this marine litter.
The level of ghost gear has increased in recent years and is likely to grow further as fishing efforts intensify.
Not only does ghost gear affect animals, it creates wide-ranging problems for the marine environment. It also costs governments millions of dollars in clean-up expenses.
Finding solutions together
We want to see governments and key industries getting on board with more than 80 industry participants and joining the GGGI.
The head of our Sea change campaign, Ingrid Giskes, said: “A global approach is needed for the problem of ghost gear to be monitored and solved at scale. Governments and industry are part of this solution.
"We hope as many industry and government representatives as possible will join our effort to eliminate ghost gear and create safer, cleaner oceans."