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Nature study (with Marine Conservation Institute’s help) provides a robust scientific roadmap for ocean protection in the next decade

A new study, Protecting the global ocean for biodiversity, food and climate, provides a roadmap for ocean conservation actions that should be taken to protect nature and people. Marine Conservation Institute scientists contributed information and were among the twenty-six scientists and economists led by Dr. Enric Sala of National Geographic Society that provided this groundbreaking…

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Inside the Fight to Save Underwater Volcanoes

Featured image: An orange basket star covers a Picasso sponge at Davidson Seamount, California. Image courtesy of NOAA and MBARI. The deep sea harbors the greatest number of species and ecosystems on Earth. Within this vast realm, the dazzling submerged volcanoes called seamounts are among the most diverse places of all. Scientists have long recognized that…

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Deep-Sea Coral Expedition to California’s Channel Islands

Location, location, location! This axiom of the real estate world is perhaps even more true in the natural world. Finding the right environmental conditions for deep-sea corals and sponges to survive and thrive is a rare occurrence in the deep ocean. Marine biologists have discovered deep-sea coral ecosystems throughout the oceans from the tropics to…

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Trump Dumps the Clean Power Plan and Ocean Life

President Trump’s Executive Order to dismantle the Clean Power Plan is a move that blatantly ignores overwhelming scientific consensus about the immense threats that carbon pollution poses to human and environmental health. The Clean Power Plan, a set of rules to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address human-caused climate change, is an enormous step in…

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California’s Ancient Islands May Receive Additional Protections

CALIFORNIA — Congressman Sam Farr (D-Calif.) and Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) have introduced landmark legislation to safeguard a series of underwater mountains and the marine wildlife they support in the deep sea off California. Known as “seamounts,” these extraordinary places are highly productive ‘oases’ in the deep sea. Off California, seamounts support rare deep‐water corals and…

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How Much is Enough?

One of the questions I am asked most frequently is how much of the ocean do we need to protect? I often reflect philosophically on the response from Dr. Sylvia Earle (Marine Conservation Institute Board Member, National Geographic Society Explorer-in-Residence, and Mission Blue founder), “More than half the world is ocean, the blue heart of…

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An Ocean Hero

Dr. Elliott Norse is retiring after an unparalleled career in marine conservation. As a result of his pioneering efforts to establish the field of marine conservation biology, we now have a vibrant and growing community of marine conservation biologists and advocates.  His work directly led to the recent explosion in marine protected area coverage around…

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Is the “Marine Protected Area” label creating the illusion of marine biodiversity conservation?

Marine biologists Mark Costello and Bill Ballantine from Leigh Marine Laboratory in New Zealand recently published a new study stressing the critical importance of no-take marine reserves for marine biodiversity conservation. While a growing body of scientific literature has documented the undeniable value of no-take reserves for protecting marine biodiversity, most marine protected area (MPA) research now…

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