Why Healthy Oceans Need Sea Turtles

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July, 2010

Sea turtles have played vital roles in maintaining the health of the world’s oceans for more than 100 million years. These roles range from maintaining productive coral reef ecosystems to transporting essential nutrients from the oceans to beaches and coastal dunes.

Major changes have occurred in the oceans because sea turtles have been virtually eliminated from many areas of the globe. Commercial fishing, loss of nesting habitat and climate change are among the human-caused threats pushing sea turtles towards extinction. As sea turtle populations decline, so does their ability to fulfillvital functions in ocean ecosystems.

Our oceans are unhealthy and under significant threat from overfishing, pollution and climate change. It is time for us to protect sea turtles and rebuild their populations to healthy levels as a vital step in ensuring healthy and resilient oceans for the future.

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