A rapid baseline survey of the world's coral reefs

For the first six years of our existence, Underwater Earth was more frequently referred to by the name of our biggest project at the time - the XL Catlin Seaview Survey.

If you're going to reveal the oceans, why not collect imagery that is a valuable scientific record too - a global record on a 'Google scale' that enables scientists to monitor change over time. The XL Catlin Seaview Survey was the most comprehensive survey of the world's coral reefs that had ever been carried out. In fact, 26 countries across the coral reef regions of the world.


We teamed up with the Global Change Institute at The University of Queensland, and numerous other scientific partners in addition to XL Catlin (founding partner) and Google to create a new way of surveying underwater environments 30 times more efficient than the traditional method. The technology was so successful it allowed us to create the first standardised global baseline record of coral reefs and we've made it freely available to all. But it's not just great science, the project's outreach campaign has generated over $200m worth of media exposure for ocean science. 

You can find out more regarding the XL Catlin Seaview Survey here.

The open-sourced scientific data is housed at the XL Global Reef Record.