Ocean Newsletter

【Ocean Newsletter】Back issues

No.435 September 20, 2018
  • Centralization of Maritime Traffic Management in Tokyo Bay
    Kazuo YAGI
    (Formerly) Director General, Maritime Traffic Department, Japan Coast Guard
  • What Environmental DNA Brings to the Future of the Oceans
    Reiji MASUDA
    Associate Professor, Field Science Education and Research Center, Kyoto University
  • The Spread of Marine Organism Poison
    Yuji NAGASHIMA
    Professor, Niigata Agro-Food University

Centralization of Maritime Traffic Management in Tokyo Bay

Kazuo YAGI
(Formerly) Director General, Maritime Traffic Department, Japan Coast Guard

Tokyo Bay (Tokyo Wan) is a large-scale hub for maritime shipping, home to the Port of Keihin and the Port of Chiba, known as internationally strategic and international hub seaports, respectively, with the metropolis at the center of Japan's society and economy in its background. Following the Great East Japan Earthquake, the Japan Coast Guard centralized the operations of the "Tokyo Wan Vessel Traffic Service Center", responsible for traffic management in Tokyo Bay, and four of the Bay's "Port Traffic Control Offices." Here, I will introduce the new "Tokyo Wan Vessel Traffic Service Center" responsible for securing the safe navigation of vessels in Tokyo Bay, which began operations in January 2018.

What Environmental DNA Brings to the Future of the Oceans

Reiji MASUDA
Associate Professor, Field Science Education and Research Center, Kyoto University

Environmental DNA analysis refers to the technology that estimates the presence and absence as well as the biomass of organisms from DNA found in the environment. While it has only been 10 years since the birth of this technology, in freshwater areas one example of its utilization has been in the detection of alien species. A methodology utilizing environmental DNA for the assessment of marine biological diversity and biomass estimation has also been gaining recognition. Given the enormous power of environmental DNA analysis, there should be careful discussions on its appropriate use, giving due consideration to the conservation of the organisms that are its focus.

The Spread of Marine Organism Poison

Yuji NAGASHIMA
Professor, Niigata Agro-Food University

The poisons in marine organisms are collectively referred to as marine toxins. Marine toxins are found in various tissues of various marine organisms, and their chemical composition and mechanisms of action also vary greatly. From their effects on human health, they are largely differentiated between the stinger and venom type, and the type known to cause food poisoning. Here, in addition to introducing the main marine toxins to cause food poisoning, I would also like to point out how global warming plays a role in spreading marine toxins both geographically and between species, and how it greatly impacts food security.

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