The rush to exploit the riches of the deep ocean and sea floor is beginning. As pollution, overfishing and climate change sap the productivity of surface waters, many countries and companies are scouting new territory deeper down. This presents a threat the deep ocean has never faced.
Vast, dark and largely unexplored, these overlooked parts of the oceans are rich in marine life, gems, metals, minerals and oil. Stretching from 200 to 980 metres below the surface, the mesopelagic - known as the twilight zone because there is so little sunlight - is the first stop for deep ocean exploitation.