Most of the revenue derived from the world’s use of oceans is concentrated among 100 international corporations, first identified by researchers at Duke University and Stockholm University’s Stockholm Resilience Center.
“Ocean 100,” insea The economy “companies collectively earned revenue of $ 1.1 trillion in 2018, according to research published on Wednesday.” Science advance. If the group were a country, it would have had the 16th largest economy in the world, which would have been almost equal Gross domestic product (GDP) of Mexico.
John Virdin, lead author of the Ocean and Coastal Policy Program at Duke’s Nicholas Institute for the Environment, said, “Now that we know who are some of the biggest beneficiaries of the ocean economy, it can improve transparency and stability related to ocean stability.” . ” Policy solution. “The small number of companies dominating these industries likely reflects high barriers to entry into the ocean economy. A lot of expertise and capital is required to operate at sea, both for established industries and emerging ones.” Such as deep-sea mining and. Marine biotechnology. “
Researchers studied eight major industries in the ocean economy: offshore oil and gas, marine equipment and construction, seafood production and processing, container shipping, shipbuilding and repair, cruise tourism, port activities, and offshore wind. The 100 largest companies took an estimated 60 percent of the $ 1.9 trillion in revenue generated by these industries in 2018, the most recent year analyzed.
Offshore oil and gas dominated the Ocean 100 list with combined revenues of $ 830 billion. The only corporation from outside that industry to make the top 10 is Danish Shipping company AP Moller-Mersk at number 9.
Researchers found a consistent pattern across all eight industries of companies accounting for the bulk of revenue. On average, the 10 largest companies in each industry accounted for 45 percent of that industry’s total revenue. The highest concentrations were found in cruise tourism (93 percent), container shipping (85 percent) and port activities (82 percent).
The authors write that this concentration presents both risks and opportunities.
“Some of these, but senior executives of large companies, are in a unique position to use global leadership in sustainability,” said co-author Heinrich Hensterblom, director of science at the Stockholm Resilience Center. “The fact that these companies are headquartered in a small number of countries also demonstrates that concrete actions by some governments can rapidly change how the private sector interacts with the ocean.”
Ocean builds on the concept of “keystone actors” developed by omsterblom and colleagues in a 2015 paper published in 100 Journal. one more. Using keystone species in the ecosystem as an analogy, the researchers identified some corporations that dominate the global seafood industry. The study, as part of the Seafood Business for Sewardship (SeaBOS) initiative for the sea, has given scientists a way to engage with industry leaders Production of seafood.
Virdin was interested in whether the Keystone Actor concept could be applied more broadly when advising governments on integrated ocean development and management policies for the ocean economy, or sometimes called the blue economy. The study of the Ocean 100 extends interdisciplinary research conducted by Duke scholars at the university into the subject of blue economy, including Virdin and co-author Daniel Vermier.
“Oceans will be increasingly centralized globally Economy In the 21st century, Vermier, executive director of the Center for Energy, Development and Global Environment (EDGE) at Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, said, “Our biggest challenges include increasing economic utilization and climate with healthy ocean ecosystems.” Have to maintain. The effect accelerates. This study confirms that a relatively small number of companies will be central to this challenge, and that they will have a real opportunity for leadership. ”
J. Virdin L. al., “The Ocean 100: International Corporations in the Ocean Economy,”. Science advance (2021). In advance. sciencemag.org/lookup… .1126 / Sciadv.abc8041
Duke University School of Nursing
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