Marine reserve

Shark meets ray. Photo by Andy Mann

Shark meets ray. Photo by Andy Mann

18
May
2016

Life’s Better in the Bahamas Shark Sanctuary

by Katie Flowers and Demian Chapman Category:

You have likely heard it somewhere before, an impressive piece of information shared tirelessly and sometimes incorrectly attributed to the impacts of shark finning only: “100 million sharks are killed every year.” Although this is an alarming number, it’s actually more factual to look at the range from the larger study estimating exploitation rates of sharks: 63 million – 273 million sharks killed annually. One hundred million is thus a conservative estimate, and the shark fin trade is not fully responsible for those landings. Data aside, the more important question now is what can we do about these losses? The answer may partially lie in the Bahamas. Before the study mentioned above even came out, the island nation made a progressive choice by fully protecting its sharks from fishing in 2011. Bahamians had put two and two together: many shark species in their waters live there either partially or year-round, and these sharks are worth big bucks alive – a 2007 estimate of $78M US in the Bahamas alone. The Bahamas is one of the best places in the Caribbean and arguably the... read more +

Image by gettyimages
31
Mar
2016

Ocean Unite: Generation Z to Alpha – the ocean cannot wait another 20 years for our protection

by Ocean Unite Category: , ,

Some changes come as lightning bolts, others as waves. And when it comes to international negotiations, even the waves can feel like they’re happening in slow-motion – with long periods stuck in freeze-frame. This may be inevitable in a world where delegates argue all night over a comma, and can take years deciding whether or not to even discuss something at all, but it is out of sync in our fast-moving age of high-speed technology, short attention spans and escalating ecological challenges. Take the ocean. You could grow a whole adult person in the length of time it has taken to move from governments recognizing the need to protect areas of the ocean beyond national jurisdictions, to governments agreeing to negotiate an international agreement to actually do it (you may want to read that sentence again!). I should know; I’ve been closely following the progress of both this nascent agreement and just such a person for over 20 years. My youngest son was born in 1997, part of Generation Z. He was five and just starting school when... read more +

An undated supplied Greenpeace photo released Thursday, May 6, 2010 of Bluefin tuna swim inside a transport cage. The Rainbow Warrior is in the Mediterranean for a three-month ship tour taking action on the threats to the sea and calling for a network of large-scale marine reserves to protect the health and productivity of the Mediterranean Sea. (AAP Image/Greenpeace, Marco Care) NO ARCHIVING, EDITORIAL USE ONLY, NO RESALES, MANDATORY CREDIT, NO RESALES, MANDATORY CREDIT

Ascension Island is a hot spot for marine diversity.

3
Jan
2016

Why a UK-sized marine reserve off the Ascension Island matters for ocean biodiversity

by Chuck Fox Category:

Today, as some will have read in the Sunday Times, the Telegraph, or the BBC News, The Bacon Foundation, founded by conservationist Louis Bacon, announced a £300,000 grant to the Blue Marine Foundation to support establishment of the largest Marine Reserve in the Atlantic Ocean. This historic new reserve is expected to protect an area only slightly less than the size of the United Kingdom in the waters surrounding Ascension Island in the Atlantic. Grant funds from The Bacon Foundation, to be administered by the Blue Marine Foundation, will support work by the Ascension Island government to close more than half of Ascension’s waters to fishing, manage a tuna fishery, and determine the boundaries of a permanent marine reserve to be established as soon as 2017. The protection of these waters is essential for the incredible number of species that exist here, including some of the largest marlin in the world, one of the most significant populations of green turtles, colonies of tropical seabirds and the island’s own unique frigate bird. The Bacon Foundation grant will cover the costs... read more +