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New award in memory of extraordinary ocean advocate Joanna Toole

July 13,2019 144 19

Joanna was en route to a UN meeting where she would have hosted a panel on how to tackle abandoned, lost and discarded fishing gear, known as ghost gear.

Ghost gear is, by far, the deadliest form of marine debris. It is four times more likely to impact on marine life, through entanglement, than all other forms of marine debris combined.

Every year more than 100,000 whales, dolphins, seals and turtles get caught in abandoned or lost fishing nets, lines and traps.

The Global Ghost Gear Initiative

In 2014, ROYAL Sea Change team, co-led by Jo Toole, established the GGGI, a multi-stakeholder, public-private partnership committed to driving solutions to the problem of lost and abandoned fishing gear worldwide.

The GGGI aims to improve the health and productivity of marine ecosystems, protect marine animals, and safeguard human health and livelihoods.

It currently brings together almost 100 partners including the fishing industry, the private sector, academia, governments, intergovernmental and non-governmental organisations.

Continuing Joanna’s legacy

“Our family is so proud that Jo lived her dream and we know the Joanna Toole Annual Ghost Gear Solutions Award will continue her legacy to make a positive difference for our oceans Jo worked so hard to protect.”

Joannas work to protect our oceans and the life within them was not a job - it was her life. Since she was a little girl she knew that when she grew up she wanted a job where she could help animals – at World Animal Protection, Ocean Care and at the United Nations she was doing that every day.

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