MOL will participate in the industry-university-government collaboration project on big data on marine biodiversity “Ocean180”

Mitsui OSK Lines, Ltd. yesterday announced its intention to participate in the industry-university-government collaborative project to conserve marine biodiversity called “Ocean180”, (Note 1) led by Professor Yasuhiro Kubota (Note 2) of the Program of Biology, Marine and Department of Science Natural Sciences Faculty of Ryukyu University (Chairman: Mutsumi Nishida; Headquarters: Nishihara-cho, Nakagami-gun, Okinawa Prefecture).

This is a long-term project to protect marine biodiversity that will visualize ocean ecosystems based on big data related to marine life, statistical modeling and artificial intelligence (AI) in cooperation with research institutes such as universities, citizens, government agencies, businesses, and financial institutions. The name “Ocean180” reflects the desire for a reversal of the deteriorating conditions of the world’s oceans and a movement towards improvement. The project will promote effective actions to conserve and regenerate the oceans based on the analysis of biodiversity big data.

MOL will provide data on vessel operations (Note 3), and so on, cooperating in the development of technologies to visualize the impact of maritime transport on ecosystems, integrating data on marine life and data on maritime transport. It will also help promote the practical application of the project and study the feasibility of commercializing and expanding the use of various expertise and technologies emerging from the project, using the information and knowledge acquired through the project in initiatives supported by MOL to protect marine biodiversity. .

In June 2021, the MOL Group implemented the “MOL Group Environmental Vision 2.1” (Note 4) with the aim of achieving zero net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2050. The group is working for the preservation of marine environments and the protection of biodiversity through these contributions to the sustainable development of our society and the preservation of nature. In the words of the company, “From the blue oceans, we support people’s lives and ensure a prosperous future. “(Fig. 1)

(Note 1) Big Data project on marine biodiversity “Ocean180”

A long-term industry-university-government collaborative project supported by several institutions under the leadership of Professor Yasuhiro Kubota, with the aim of developing underlying technology to generalize big data on marine biodiversity and develop applied technology for ” underwater life ”. Currently, the organizations involved are launching various research efforts, but plans are underway to involve other parties in the project in the future.

The project has the following main objectives.

  • Goal (1) Develop big data on marine biodiversity that can be used by everyone. Develop a tool to integrate data by standardizing, improving and refining various information related to marine life. Then map the values ​​of indicators of diversity and conservation / use of genes, species, biotic communities and ecosystems fully using machine learning (AI, etc.) to provide an information base available to agencies governments, businesses and other organizations involved in the oceans.
  • Goal (2) Technological development linked to the conservation / adaptable and sustainable use of the oceans. Quantitatively project spatio-temporal models of biodiversity on a global / Japanese scale, make spatial arrangements in marine protected areas taking into account environmental changes and make impact assessments on marine biodiversity and ecosystem services related to the environment. global warming, coastal development and fisheries. and shipping industries.
  • Goal (3) Promote practical application in society in cooperation with various industries. Cooperate with citizens, administrations, businesses and financial institutions. For example, establish the educational project GIGA through the application of visualization of marine life, establish models of maritime transport operations taking into account the impact on marine ecosystems and establish a system of monitoring and real-time assessment related to the impact on underwater life.

(Note 2) Professor Yasuhiro Kubota

Professor Kubota generates great biodiversity data based on the results of natural history research and visualizes the distribution of species across Japan. He created Think Nature, Inc., a venture capital firm in which researchers in Japan and abroad play a leading role in the establishment and practical application of the Japan Biodiversity Mapping Project (J-BMP ) ( / It supports projects related to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by government agencies and private companies, for example, by creating conservation plans based on big data of biodiversity through the project. He obtained his doctorate from the Graduate School of Science, Tokyo Metropolitan University (Faculty of Science). He became Associate Professor, Biology Program, Department of Marine and Natural Sciences, Faculty of Science, Ryukyu University in 2007, and Professor in 2015.

(Note 3) Vessel operating data

MOL is currently participating in the “FOCUS Project” ** aimed at improving the operational safety of its operated vessels and further reducing their environmental impact by collecting and applying large data related to navigation and engines. By analyzing data collected by more than 10,000 detection elements of ships, engines, cargoes, marine weather, etc. , and protect the marine environment.
** Launch of the “FOCUS” project – Collaborative innovation transcending business categories; The ICT-based, data-driven project aims for safer operation and a cleaner environment –

(Note 4) “MOL 2.1 Group’s Environmental Vision”

Source: Mitsui OSK Lines

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