Since 2001, Oceana has achieved hundreds 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.
Expanding the MPA in Cabrera
After Oceana released a report about Cabrera, one of Spain’s Balearic Islands, the Balearic government used it as the scientific basis to expand the MPA in the region.
Shark Finning Ban Improvements Passed
Oceana, along with other conservation organizations, helped advance legislation that would establish a national requirement to land sharks with fins attached. In March 2009, after significant advocacy by Oceana, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Shark Conservation Act of 2009 (H.R. 81) to improve existing laws originally intended to prevent shark finning. The bill requires sharks to be landed with their fins naturally attached, which allows for better enforcement and data collection for use in stock assessments and quota monitoring.
Condemning Driftnetting in France and Italy
The European Court of Justice condemned France for using illegal driftnets to catch bluefin tuna. Later in March, three owners of illegal driftnetting vessels in southern Italy were arrested after Oceana provided authorities with a variety of documentation and reported more than 150 vessels using this illegal fishing gear.
Mid-Atlantic Council Decision to Ban Bottom Trawling in Ocean Canyons Follows Trend Begun by New England Panel
The Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council unanimously voted to accept the recent New England council decision to protect deep-sea coral communities in New England and Mid-Atlantic sub-marine canyons from destructive monkfish bottom trawling gear. These decisions are the first indication that fishery managers are using new scientific research to protect invaluable marine life, such as deep-sea corals.
Protecting Important Ecological Areas off the Oregon coast
The Oregon state legislature passed a bill to establish Oregon’s first two marine reserves and a protected area in its coastal waters, and defined a two year process to evaluate and implement additional areas to build a network of protected areas and reserves. Oceana worked to identify the Important Ecological Areas off the Oregon coast and with a coalition of conservationists, scientists, and local communities, advanced a statewide proposal to protect Oregon’s coastal ocean ecosystem.
Kroger and Harris Teeter Join the Green List
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.
Costco Joins the Green List
Costco, the nation’s largest wholesaler, agrees to post the FDA fish consumption advisory at the point of sale and adds almost 400 grocery stores to Oceana’s Green List.
Krill Protected in Pacific Waters
Federal policymakers released the final regulations banning all fishing for krill in U.S. Pacific waters of California, Oregon and Washington. This action was led by Oceana and others and has had strong support from scientists, conservationists, fishermen, coastal businesses and local communities.
Sea Turtles Protected from Gulf Longlines
After Oceana’s advocacy work, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) put in place an emergency closure of the eastern Gulf of Mexico to bottom longline fishing gear from the reef fish fishery to protect sea turtles. The closure included all waters shallower than 50 fathoms for a period of six months. NMFS took this action after the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council voted (10-7) to ask them to do so. Oceana was instrumental in pushing both the Agency and the Council to take these actions to protect sea turtles.
Pacific Loggerheads Protected from West Coast Longlines
The federal Pacific Fishery Management Council voted to maintain a standing prohibition on a West Coast-based high seas longline fishery. The vote will prevent the opening of a new swordfish fishery that would threaten migrating loggerhead sea turtles and other marine wildlife on the high seas of the north Pacific Ocean.