Friday, June 28, 2013

Lest We Forget

US coastal waters are still in dire need of protections, according to the 2013 State of the Seas report by the Marine Conservation Institute.  Marine Protected Areas (MPA) have been shown to boost fish populations, and support healthy and vibrant ecosystems.

Just like parks and wildlife sanctuaries on land, MPAs serve as refuges for important and valuable marine life and their habitats.

"The United States has done a lackluster job of protecting coasts through no-take protection laws, the strictest way to create a marine protected area (MPA). No-take protections mean that oil and gas drilling are prohibited, as well as fishing and other types of ecological disturbances.

Of 23 coastal states surveyed, 15 have zero (0.00%) no-take areas. Six have little more than one percent of coastal waters under no-take protections, and only two states (California and Hawaii) have more than five percent of their coasts designated as no-take areas," according to a Huffington Post article about the report.

The equation is straight forward and real:  MPAs mean healthy seas and healthy seas mean healthy people.  They also mean cash money.  The services provided by healthy oceans are worth trillions of dollars.

“Whether you love our oceans for their beauty, for their fishes and marine mammals or for generating half of the oxygen we breathe, you should want them to be strongly protected,” says Dr. Sylvia Earle, otherwise known as Her Deepness.

If you cannot hear her, who can you hear?   

Read the whole State of the Seas report here.

Contact your representatives and tell that marine protected areas are important to you.

Check out Ocean Champions and find out which politicians deserve your support.

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