In another critical step to protect oceans and conserve marine ecosystems, President Obama announced the development of important new tools to combat the global threat of illegal fishing at the ‘Our Oceans’ conference in Valparaiso, Chile. A new global initiative will focus on fisheries enforcement at sea.
After years of searching for oil in the cold and turbulent waters of Alaska’s Chukchi Sea, Royal Dutch Shell has abandoned its plans to drill for the “foreseeable future.” This announcement is the conclusion of weeks of summer exploration, where results of drilling to a depth of 6,800 feet indicated oil and gas findings were “not sufficient to warrant further exploration.”
WWF’s Living Blue Planet Report on the health of the ocean finds that the marine vertebrate population has declined by 49 percent between 1970 and 2012. The report tracks 5,829 populations of 1,234 mammal, bird, reptile, and fish species through a marine living planet index. The evidence, analyzed by researchers at the Zoological Society of London, paints a troubling picture.
For another year, Arctic sea ice will cover much less of the Arctic Ocean than it used to. And with less ice comes more killer whales—predators that feed on other whales, including some recovering species.
To better understand the post-release behavior of tagged green turtles, WWF and partners carefully fastened a GoPro—a tiny waterproof camera—to the back of a female sea turtle. The 15 minutes of footage the camera collected gives us a unique view of the Great Barrier Reef.
Swimming with sharks in Fiji is a conservation success; the communities that once harvested these sharks are now fully included in the dive venture, and continue to profit from the tourism they attract. Experiences like this reaffirm the work WWF is doing, advocating our efforts in moving the needle forward and making a lasting positive impact on the environment and people’s lives. It goes to show that we can learn from our experiences and become a wiser species.
A full ban on dumping in the Great Barrier Reef should come to fruition in a matter of months. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Committee has voted to maintain pressure on Australia to deliver on its promise to restore the health of the reef.
WWF's Alison Cross reflects on her experience visiting Peru's only mahi mahi fishery. Fishers and their families rely on abundant fish stocks for their livelihoods. The fishers of Pucusana, government officials and others had finally recognized both the economic and environmental value of selling a sustainably sourced fish, with the long-term goal of achieving certification from the Marine Stewardship Council, an organization that recognizes sustainable fishing practices.
The economic value of marine ecosystem services to people and communities is expected to increase with the expansion of marine protected areas (MPAs), according to analysis of new research commissioned by WWF.
Our oceans are worth at least $24 trillion, according to a new WWF report Reviving the Ocean Economy: The Case for Action–2015. And goods and services from coastal and marine environments amount to about $2.5 trillion each year—that would put the ocean as the seventh largest economy in the world if put into terms of Gross Domestic Product.
The Presidential Task Force on Combatting Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) Fishing and Seafood Fraud announced its action plan in its efforts to stop the import and sale of IUU seafood products in the United States on March 15, 2015, at the largest seafood show in North America.
At the top of the food chain, whales play a vital role in the overall health of the environment. WWF documents and protects critical feeding and breeding areas, and migration routes of whales. We also work to help shift shipping lanes to limit noise and other disruptions for whales and other marine species.
Unsustainable development alongside the Great Barrier Reef could cause severe damage to one of Earth’s most important marine environmental systems, according to a new report commissioned by WWF. In order to prevent new stress on this already-vulnerable ecosystem, WWF is calling on the Australian government to ban all dumping of dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Site.
Dalavapuram lies in the Ashtamudi lakes estuary on the southwest coast of India. It is home to a Ramsar Convention site where the intertwined lakes and inlets form a very important estuary system for migratory birds. This is also the home of Ashtamudi short-necked clam fishery, which in November 2014 became the first Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified sustainable fishery in India.
A tuna fishing vessel operating in the offshore waters of Pakistan safely released a giant sunfish that was entangled in its fishing net. After a struggle of about 20 minutes, the fishermen successfully freed this nearly six-foot-long sunfish weighing nearly 1,000 pounds.
Today President Obama announced the protection of Bristol Bay, Alaska, from offshore oil and gas drilling. Bristol Bay is home to the last pristine salmon ecosystem in North America and stands unmatched in its productivity. Nearly 50 percent of the world’s wild sockeye salmon come from these waters.
For generations, nature has provided for the residents of Malaysia’s islands and coasts. But growing demand for seafood throughout the region has left the seas nearly empty. As communities face the reality that fishing is no longer enough to support the economy, they are hoping tourism can create new opportunities.
Illegally caught seafood looks the same as any other seafood you buy at a store or in a market, making it extremely difficult for you to tell right from wrong. Try tracing the fish on your plate back to the ship with this infographic. Then, learn how we can fix this process.
Today, the Philippines' oceans are troubled. For over a century, coastal development, destructive fishing practices, coral mining, sedimentation, overfishing and chemical pollution have chipped away at the ocean’s health. Add to that climate change consequences such as ocean warming, acidification and coral bleaching, and we have an undersea war against marine resources. Faced with this problem, many countries within the Coral Triangle have established Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), to conserve what’s left.
For decades, the Great Barrier Reef has enjoyed World Heritage Status and been synonymous with diving, tourism and with Australia. But in June of this year, UNESCO threatened to downgrade the Great Barrier Reef to the World Heritage ‘In Danger’ list; a category populated predominantly by war-torn and developing nations. The final decision should be made in 2015.