Earthwatch and Mitsubishi Corporation have worked together since 1993, making the company one of our longest-standing partners.
Since 2006, Mitsubishi Corporation has been a key partner in the Global Coral Reef Conservation Project. Together, we are working to make coral reefs more resilient, protecting these vital ecosystems against climate change and other threats.
Coral reefs are one of the planet’s most important ecosystems. They cover just 0.2% of the world's seafloor but are home to a quarter of all marine life. Half a billion people worldwide depend upon reefs for food.
But the future of the world’s coral reefs is under threat. Reefs are suffering from the devastating impacts of pollution, climate change and overfishing. Scientists predict that if the situation doesn’t improve significantly, we will lose most coral reefs by the middle of this century.
Since 2006, Mitsubishi Corporation has been one of the partners of the Global Coral Reef Conservation Project, along with the University of Essex, Seychelles National Park Authority and the University of Western Australia.
The project is translating cutting-edge science into practical coral management solutions. Most recently, work has focused on ‘coral gardening’ in the Seychelles, where resilient coral types are grown in special underwater nurseries and then introduced back into vulnerable reefs.
It’s also important to recognise the fishing communities which depend on coral reefs for their food and their livelihoods. Part of our work in this area focuses on the impact of coral reef degradation on people, to inform conservation plans.
The aim for the project is to increase the resilience of coral reefs, helping to protect them from the effects of climate change and securing their future for marine life and people.
Coral reef conservation is one of Mitsubishi Corporation’s key areas of focus for their environmental work. As well as funding the Global Coral Reef Conservation Project, Mitsubishi Corporation has also played a vital role in supporting local scientists, and assisting research directly through volunteering opportunities for employees.
To ensure a bright future for coral reefs, it’s vital that we build local scientific knowledge by training the next generation of leaders in conservation. Since 2006, Mitsubishi Corporation has funded training opportunities for more than 70 local scientists within the East African region. The training programmes have been focused on marine conservation, socioeconomic research, and community engagement.
Employees from Mitsubishi Corporation have taken part in expeditions to support the research, learning hands-on coral reef research and restoration techniques. Through this initiative, employees have learnt more about the threats facing coral reefs, and how they can take action to protect these vital ecosystems.
Images: iStock/Tirachard, iStock/Dudarev Mikhail, iStock/kanarys, iStock/Janos, iStock/NatureNow