SAvE Whales featured in Vima Sunday Edition

SAvE Whales, the smart technology which transmits the exact position of sperm whales in the Mediterranean Sea and informs passing ships in order to avoid collision is featured in Vima Sunday Edition, in a news story titled “Made in Greece system for saving sperm whales“.

The news story written by Machie Tratsa was triggered by the fact that this innovative system was presented at the recent 8th meeting of the 24 contracting states of ACCOBAMS (Agreement for the Conservation of Cetaceans in the Black Sea, the Mediterranean and the Contiguous Zone of the Atlantic), held in December in Malta, with the participation of the Greek delegation.

As the article points out, according to the resolution adopted by ACCOBAMS, it is proposed as a issue of urgency that Member States take measures to mitigate cetacean collisions with passing ships, with priority given to high risk areas where collisions are frequent, including the Greek Trench.

This problem is addressed by the technology of the SAvE Whales system presented at a special ACCOBAMS event, highlighting the positive results coming out of its pilot application. It is a system developed through the collaboration of Greek and other scientific institutions and the Ocean Care organization to address the collision with passing ships, which is one of the main threats that has led to the decline of the sperm whales population in the Mediterranean.

We consider positively the mobilization of the Greek authorities with their participation in this year’s ACCOBAMS meeting and hope that they will use the available opportunities for the protection of sperm whales. SAvE Whales is a mature option, especially for areas, such as the Kythera Straits, where the implementation of other measures, in particular the shifting of vessel routes, is not feasible”, says Ioli Christopoulou, Policy Director, The Green Tank.

The development of the system was supported and funded by OceanCare and carried out by Greek researchers from the Institute of Applied and Computational Mathematics – FORTH (Greece) and the Pelagos Cetacean Research Institute (Greece), through collaboration with Marine Traffic, also Greek, Green2Sustain and the CINTAL research centre – University of Algarve (Portugal). OceanCare in collaboration with the Pelagos Cetacean Research Institute, FORTH, and The Green Tank are currently informing the relevant stakeholders about the contribution of such a system to the protection of the endangered sperm whales population.

The news story was published in Vima Sunday Edition, on December 31, 2022, and is now available online (in Greek).