The oceans supply 50 percent of the air we breathe. They are a workplace to more than 50 million people. And yet, the journalism about this sprawling and vital place is a rarity.

  1. The secretive prisons that keep migrants out of Europe

    Tired of migrants arriving from Africa, the E.U. has created a shadow immigration system that captures them before they reach its shores, and sends them to brutal Libyan detention centers run by militias.

  2. The smell of money

    In the small coastal country, an exploding industry has led to big economic promises, and a steep environmental price.

  3. Purgatory at sea

    Off the coast of Italy, cruise ships are being repurposed as holding pens for migrants rescued from the Mediterranean.

  4. Storming the Thunder

    For 110 days and across two seas and three oceans, crews stalked a fugitive fishing ship considered the world’s most notorious poacher.

  5. A slaughter at sea, a grainy video and justice delayed

    Among the investigations covered in The Outlaw Ocean book is that of the Murder at Sea story, which reveals a slow-motion slaughter of at least four men caught on camera.

  6. Critics question the climate crisis benefits of deep seabed mining

    The seafloor is thought to hold trillions of dollar’s worth of metals and the Pacific-island nation of Nauru is making bold moves to get a jump on the global competition to plumb these depths.

  7. Saving the planet while ignoring two thirds of it

    While companies dump carbon into the air for free, the lungs of the globe suffer. The current climate crisis barely even considers the oceans.

  8. The worsening state of seafarers

    The past six months have thrown an unusual amount of attention on an otherwise invisible workforce.

  9. From capture to culture

    With more than 80 percent of the world’s fish stocks at or near collapse, some marine conservationists suggest that aquaculture might help counter the problem of overfishing.

  10. Reining in the outlaw ocean

    What can we do to mitigate the mayhem offshore?

  11. Shell companies in fishing industry get new attention

    The international fishing industry is ripe with corruption bred by corporate anonymity.

  12. Subsidizing China’s fishing fleet

    No other country comes close in the size of China’s fishing armada, but the dominance and reach of this fleet raises broader questions about how, why and at what cost China has put so many boats on the water.

  13. The hidden cost behind the explosion in Beirut

    Behind the tragedy of the recent deadly explosion in Beirut is the more pervasive travesty of the abandonment of ships, seafarers and cargo.

  14. The animated rendering of North Korean fishermen

    We partnered with two types of creators — an animator and a composer — to make an artistic rendering of our recent investigation.

  15. The deadly secret of China’s invisible armada

    Desperate North Korean fishermen are washing ashore as skeletons because of the world’s largest illegal fleet.

  16. The Somali 7 investigation

    This page will now serve as the location where we will store reports on the Somali 7, original documents and open questions for which we hope to get answers from interested stakeholders.

  17. Lawless ocean: The link between human rights abuses and overfishing

    The high seas remain an often-dystopian realm where the scant laws that do exist are frequently ignored. This has led to overfishing, illegal dumping, and other environmental abuses that are closely linked to human rights violations aboard thousands of vessels.

  18. Thailand’s sea slaves: Shackled, whipped and beheaded

    Every year, tens of thousands of migrants to Thailand are sent to brutal lives at sea.

  19. Ship of horrors: Life and death on the lawless high seas

    From bullying and sexual assault to squalid living conditions and forced labour, working at sea can be a grim business—and one deep-sea fishing fleet is particularly notorious.

  20. The pint-size nation off the English coast

    The absurd and remarkable story of Sealand, a “micronation” on an eerie metal platform, tells us plenty about libertarianism, national sovereignty, and the lawlessness of the ocean.

  21. Antarctica: A place of marvel

    In a two-person submarine more than 700 feet under the polar ice, we witnessed some bizarre creatures.

  22. Norway: Disaster risk in the Arctic

    As an oil company tries to drill in international Arctic waters, advocates race to block them.

  23. Indonesia: Violent clashes

    Indonesia arrests Vietnam’s fishermen, and Vietnam responds by ramming a ship and taking an Indonesian officer captive.

  24. Mexico: Abortion on the high seas

    Visiting countries where abortions are illegal, a Dutch doctor secrets women out to international waters to provide the procedure.

  25. Somalia: Discord on the horn of Africa

    One of the most lawless regions on the planet, Somalia is a magnet for illegal fishing.

  26. Kenya: Illegal cover up

    Ships that were supposed to have been scrapped are caught pillaging the east coast of Africa.

  27. Brazil: A sea-floor battle

    A team of Brazilian researchers hustled to stop a trio of energy companies from drilling at the mouth of the Amazon River.

  28. England: The magic pipe

    Oil spills are a disaster and yet intentional dumping is far more common.

  29. Antarctica: The hunt for hunters

    Sea Shepherd chases the world’s last industrial whaling ship.

  30. ‘Sea slaves’: The human misery that feeds pets and livestock

    Men who have fled servitude on fishing boats recount beatings and worse as nets are cast for the catch that will become pet food and livestock feed.

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