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Our Victories

Since 2001, Oceana has achieved dozens of concrete policy victories for marine life and habitats. From stopping bottom trawling in sensitive habitat areas to protecting sea turtles from commercial fishing gear, our victories represent a new hope for the world’s oceans.

Banning Mediterranean Driftnetting

February, 2008

The European Court of Justice rejected any further requests by the French government for exemptions from the EU ban on driftnetting in the Mediterranean Sea. This ruling will spare 25,000 juvenile bluefin tuna annually, along with 10,000 non-targeted marine species caught annually in the driftnets.

Kroger and Harris Teeter Join the Green List

January, 2008

In response to a newly published Oceana report on the levels of mercury in grocery store seafood, both Kroger and Harris Teeter grocery companies begin to post the FDA fish consumption advisory at the point of sale. Kroger is the United States’ second largest grocery company and the addition of both companies added nearly 2,600 grocery stores to Oceana’s Green List.

Measures to Reduce Fishing Waste Stand Up in Court

December, 2007

A federal appeals court let stand conservation measures approved by the North Pacific Fishery Management Council and NOAA Fisheries, and supported by Oceana, to limit the amount of discards from large bottom trawling vessels. The regulations require large “head and gut” bottom trawl vessels in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands to retain and utilize a larger portion of the fish they catch, as opposed to keeping only the most economically valuable species and throwing the rest overboard. 

According to NOAA estimates, these regulations will prevent 110 million pounds of groundfish from being wasted as unwanted bycatch each year, and serve as an incentive for vessels to fish more carefully, limiting bycatch of corals and other marine animals.

Vermont Country Store Stops Selling Shark Squalane

December, 2007

Thousands of Oceana Wavemakers contacted the Vermont Country Story, a leading catalog retailer, convincing it to stop selling a skin enhancer containing shark squalane. In an ironic note, the product was marketed under the name “Oceana.”

WTO Drafts Agreement on Subsidies

November, 2007

The World Trade Organization took a tremendous step forward in the negotiations when it produced the first draft agreement on fisheries subsidies which surpassed, in some cases, all of Oceana’s conservation recommendations. The WTO negotiations were expected to be completed by the end of 2008, but are still ongoing because of reasons not related to fisheries subsidies. Oceana continues to “protect” the draft agreement, which is still intact and remains the basis for the negotiations.

ERCO Converts Port Edwards, Wisconsin Facility to Mercury-Free Technology

August, 2007

ERCO Worldwide announced it would switch to mercury-free technology at its Port Edwards, Wisconsin facility. ERCO’s switch eliminated Wisconsin’s largest source of mercury air pollution.

Protecting Pacific Leatherbacks from Gillnets

June, 2007

Under pressure from scientists and conservation groups, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) denied a proposal to allow drift gillnet vessels to operate in an area off the California and Oregon coasts where such fishing is seasonally banned to protect the critically endangered Pacific leatherback sea turtle. The drift gillnet fishery, which targets swordfish, tuna and sharks, also kills not just endangered sea turtles, but humpback, fin, gray and sperm whales, several species of dolphins and other marine mammals.

First-ever Fishery Ecosystem Plan Passed for Aleutian Islands

June, 2007

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council adopted the nation’s first comprehensive ecosystem-based management measure when it approved the Aleutian Islands Fishery Ecosystem Plan. This Fishery Ecosystem Plan is a blueprint for considering all aspects of the marine ecosystem, including biological diversity, abundant populations of fish, food needs of top predators, and healthy intact habitats, when making decisions on managing healthy and sustainable fisheries in the Aleutian Islands.

This is an important new tool in managing Aleutian Islands fisheries from a more holistic, ecosystem-based perspective, and sets a remarkable precedent for ecosystem-based management measures in other fisheries around the nation.


U.S. House Passes Resolution on Fishing Subsidies

June, 2007

The United States House of Representatives passed a resolution stating that eliminating harmful fisheries subsidies represents a U.S. priority. That resolution, H.Con.Res.94, was sponsored by Rep. Bordallo.

U.S. Senate Passes Resolution on Fishing Subsidies

May, 2007

In May 2007, the U.S. Senate passed a resolution making it clear the elimination of harmful fisheries subsidies is a U.S. priority. The resolution, S.Res.208, was sponsored by Senator Ted Stevens.