News from the UK Government

08 August 2016

New Foresight project launched on the future of the sea

The project will look at the important future trends, challenges and opportunities for the UK from the sea.

The sea covers 70% of the world’s surface and is essential to regulating global temperature, oxygen and water. The Government Office for Science’s new Foresight project will consider the role that science and technology can play in understanding and providing solutions to long-term issues affecting the future of the sea.

Commenting on the project the Government Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir Mark Walport said,

"Oceans are vital to all life on our planet. They produce over half the oxygen we breathe, absorb most of the carbon from our atmosphere and help control our weather. They also provide food for us and transport routes for our goods.Technological advances are opening new opportunities to understand the sea, for example how oceanic processes such as acidification affect the globe or what resources may be under the sea floor.This project will help policy makers to identify the most important trends, challenges and opportunities for the UK from the world’s seas and oceans."

The project will begin by focusing on the following areas:

  • resources and economic potential of the sea
  • environmental issues
  • governance of the sea

These areas are likely to develop over the course of the project.