Sea-rious Threats in the Black Sea

Apr 8, 2022

Jean-Phillippe Tournut | Getty Images

There appears to be even more risk to human lives and the supply chain from the Ukraine and Russia conflict.

More Pacific: The Black Sea serves as a major shipping route for grain, oil and oil products. Floating mines are concerning for the merchant ships sailing the area. 

Two seafarers have died, and five merchant vessels have been hit by projectiles off Ukraine’s coast since the war started. Turkey safely detonated a stray naval mine Wednesday, which is the third mine found.

This comes as we’re also facing soaring food prices, fertilizer shortages and loss of production in Ukraine because of the war. According to Syngenta, approximately 400 million people are dependent on Russia and Ukraine for food. 

Safe harbors: Maritime officials say governments must ensure safe passage to keep supply chains running. The International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) union and the Joint Negotiating Group of maritime employees are trying to find ways to keep seafarers and their vessels safe from becoming “collateral damage” in the conflict.