Victories | Oceana
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Victories

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.

February, 2019

Spain Creates the Second-Largest Marine National Park in the Mediterranean

After more than a decade of campaign work by Oceana and our allies, including six research expeditions made possible by numerous supporters, the Spanish government increased the size of Cabrera National Park from 100 to 900 square kilometers. This increase makes Cabrera – one of the richest and most biodiverse places in the Mediterranean and Spanish Coast – the second largest marine national park in the Mediterranean and the first one to protect deep-sea corals.

January, 2019

Chile Passes One of World’s Strongest Laws Against Illegal Fishing

After campaigning by Oceana and our allies, Chile passed a new law to fight illegal fishing. The new law extends criminal liability for illegal fishing to transporters, processors, vendors and other middlemen – where the most money from criminal activity is to be made – while legalizing subsistence and survival fishing. Oceana advocated for modernization of the law for three years and introduced one of its key components: mandating that the government make publicly accessible the fishing vessels tracking data it collects.

December, 2018

The Philippines Protects 276,000 Square Kilometers of Ocean from Bottom Trawling

In the Philippines, following Oceana’s campaign, the government effectively ended bottom trawling in all municipal waters. The area protected is roughly equivalent to the landmass of the entire country. Bottom trawlers destroy habitat, which includes ocean nurseries, by dragging heavily weighted nets across the ocean floor in pursuit of fish and leaving behind damage that can last centuries.

December, 2018

Peru Passes Law to Ban Plastic Bags and Reduce Plastics Use in Protected Areas

After campaigning by Oceana and our allies, a new law in Peru will reduce the use of plastics and plastic pollution. Peru’s Congress passed legislation that bans the use of plastic bags and restricts other single-use plastics including straws. The measures also prohibit the use of plastics in Peru’s beaches, coast and the country’s many protected areas.

October, 2018

California Stops Use of Destructive Fishing Gear that Kills Dolphins, Turtles and Sharks

The California swordfish drift gillnet fishery kills more dolphins than all observed U.S. West Coast fisheries combined. Thanks to a years-long campaign by Oceana and our allies, a new California law will clean up the fishery by phasing out the use of drift gillnets through a buyout transition program and incentivizing the use of cleaner fishing gear.

September, 2018

Brazil Stops Destructive Bottom Trawling in 13,000 Square Kilometers of Ocean That Is Home To Endangered Species

After campaign by Oceana and our allies, the government of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil’s southernmost state, passed a law to ban existing bottom trawling. These new protections extend along the entire length of the state’s 620-kilometer coast and cover a distance out to 12 nautical miles (22.2 km) from shore. The ban  protects waters that are important to artisanal fishers and home to many endangered species.

June, 2018

Malta expands habitat protections in the Mediterranean and protects 35 percent of its waters

This announcement is the result of Oceana efforts that began in 2013, and the protections are based on the findings of two Oceana expeditions (2015 and 2016 LIFE BaĦAR Expeditions). Oceana mapped out sandbanks, reefs and more than 89 marine caves through use of a remotely operated vehicle and scuba divers. With these new measures, 35 percent of Malta’s waters are now protected.

May, 2018

The Philippines Protects the Philippine Rise

After campaigning by Oceana and its allies, the Philippines government created a marine protected area, declaring 500 square kilometers of rare underseas coral habitat as a strict protection zone where only scientific research will be permitted, as well as an additional 3,000 square kilometers where active fishing gear will be banned. Oceana’s 2016 expedition documented the stunning biodiversity and abundance in the region, and these new measures will help protect marine life including mesophotic (twilight) coral reefs, whales, dolphins, sharks, rays and sea turtles. The area is also a spawning area for Pacific bluefin tuna, one of the most valuable fish on Earth.

May, 2018

Brazil introduces first-ever management rules for tainha, begins science-based management of fisheries

For the first time, the country’s tainha fishery (Brazil’s most important fishery) will be governed by scientific management, including stock assessments and catch limits. When Oceana first arrived, Brazil collected almost no fisheries data and had no catch limits for any ocean fish, leading to overfishing and declining stocks. Oceana successfully brought together government officials, scientists and small-scale and commercial fishers to introduce some much-needed, science-based policymaking into Brazil's oceans.

April, 2018

More than 362,000 square kilometers of fragile seafloor habitats protected from destructive bottom trawling off U.S. Pacific coast

In a unanimous vote, the Pacific Fishery Management Council acted to protect more than 362,000 square miles of seafloor (an area equivalent to the size of Germany) from bottom trawling, a destructive fishing practice in which heavy fishing gear is dragged across the seabed. This action will safeguard a unique variety of coral gardens, sponge beds, rocky reefs, and deep-sea ecosystems that provide nurseries, food and shelter for many species — including lingcod, sablefish, flatfish, sharks, rays and more than 60 species of rockfish.

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