the ocean's parks and refuges


marine protection by country or ecoregion


the latest MPA campaigns and announcements

Marine Advocates Win Big at Goldman Environmental Awards


Congratulations to our colleagues Jean Wiener (Haiti) and Howard Wood (United Kingdom), both of whom were recognized this week with a Goldman Environmental Prize for their work in designating marine protected areas in their respective home countries. It is rewarding and encouraging to see accolades given for the hard, often unsung, work that it takes to steward strong, effective marine protection for our oceans.

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Discover opportunites to support marine conservation efforts and share petitions, comment periods and public meetings.

Great British Oceans Campaign Update


The UK Government announced the establishment of the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve. A coalition of leading conservation organisations are urging the British Government to protect over 1.8 million sq km of the world’s ocean by creating marine reserves in three of the UK’s overseas territories. The creation of marine reserves around the Pitcairn Islands, Ascension Island and the South Sandwich Islands would create three of the largest marine reserves in the world and provide support for rare and threatened species living on these islands, from whales and turtles to rare seabirds, penguins and corals.

More on Great British Oceans Campaign

20% for 2020


The Marine Conservation Institute is joining with Greenpeace, Mission Blue, and Sylvia Earle Alliance to challenge individuals and businesses to share a bold vision for healthy and thriving oceans. We want to protect 20% of the US oceans by 2020! 

Why Marine Protected Areas?

Why MPAs?

Marine protected areas are essential to safeguard biodiversity and to sustain vibrant seas.

Marine protected areas can increase biomass and biodiversity in tropical and temperate ecosystems, as well as serve as insurance policies against the impacts of fishing and other destructive activities. If managed properly, they are an effective way of protecting marine ecosystems along with their cultural and historical heritage for us and future generations.

Learn Why Marine Protected Areas Work

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Explore Earth's Marine Protected Areas

  • What is protected where?
  • Find out more about your favorite marine parks and refuges.
  • Determine management jurisdiction and regulations.
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Analyze protection levels.

Marine Protected Area statistics by political or ecological dimensions.

By Nation By Biogeography (coming)

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