Whale-watching is a growing business around Japan, with popular spots from the southern Okinawa islands up to Rausu, a fishing village on the island of Hokkaido, so far north that it's closer to Russia than to Tokyo.
The number of whale watchers around Japan has more than doubled between 1998 and 2015, the latest year for which national data is available. One company in Okinawa had 18,000 customers between January and March this year.
An investigation by the London-based Environmental Justice Foundation (EJF) has confirmed earlier estimates that in 2017 saiko fishing – the practice of trans-shipping fish at sea from industrial trawlers to specially adapted canoes – took around 100,000 metric tonnes of fish.
No flag can claim the high seas, but many nations exploit them. As a result, life in the two-thirds of the oceans beyond any country's territorial waters faces many threats that are largely unregulated, including overfishing and the emerging deep-sea mining industry.
Now, nations are negotiating the first-ever high-seas conservation treaty, which the United Nations expects to finalize next year.
A record number of dolphins have washed up on France’s Atlantic coast in the last three months, many with devastating injures.
Environmental campaigners say 1,100 mutilated dolphins have been found since January, but the real figure could be 10 times higher as many bodies sink without trace. Activists warn the marine slaughter could threaten the extinction of the European dolphin population in the region.