Environmental Issues: Oceans

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America’s Underwater Parks
The Marine Life Protection Act Safeguards Our Special Undersea Places

Fact Sheet
More than 130 years ago, the United States began to protect our most treasured areas on land by creating National Parks. Now, California has extended that kind of protection to special marine areas by creating underwater parks. In December 2012, the state completed a network of marine parks along its entire coast to help sustain and revitalize the rich web of ocean life. Get document in pdf.
Cabo Pulmo: Protecting Baja California's Thriving Coral Reef from Massive Tourism Development
Fact Sheet
Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park, at the southern tip of Mexico's Baja California peninsula, is home to the only living hard coral reef in the Gulf of California. Teeming with marine life, it is one of the healthiest marine reserves in the world. But Spanish developer Hansa Urbana plans to build a colossal tourism and real estate complex right next door, which would devastate the park's fragile ecosystem. To protect the reef and its marine life, NRDC is partnering with local and international groups in a multi-faceted campaign to stop Hansa Urbana and create a sustainable, long-term development plan for the area. Get document in pdf.
End Commercial Whaling
Renegade whale hunting threatens the survival of endangered species around the world

Overview
Whales are still being killed across the world's oceans -- despite an international ban on commercial whaling -- by countries that exploit loopholes and label their hunts as "scientific research."
Go Below the Surface of the Gulf Oil Disaster
An interactive guide to the Gulf spill's effects on one of the most productive marine ecosystems in the world

Guide
It appears that only a fraction of the millions of gallons of crude oil that have flooded into the Gulf of Mexico rises to the surface. A lot of the oil remains dissolved or dispersed in the Gulf’s waters, contaminating one of the most productive marine ecosystems in the world. Go below the surface of the Gulf oil disaster with this interactive graphic.

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Documents Tagged whales in All Sections

Laguna San Ignacio Gray Whale Nursery
Photo Album
Laguna San Ignacio in Baja California, Mexico is best known as winter home to the gray whale. Every year the whales migrate over 10,000 miles from their summer feeding grounds above the Arctic Circle to the waters along the west coast of the Baja peninsula, where they have adopted the warm, shallow lagoons for their calving nurseries. Here they spend the months of December to March birthing, feeding their calves, breaching, and spyhopping.
Boom, Baby, Boom
The Environmental Impacts of Seismic Surveys

Fact Sheet
For offshore exploration, the oil and gas industry typically relies on arrays of airguns towed behind ships. Although most of the energy from these acoustic “shots” is intended to search downward for evidence of oil and gas deep beneath the seafloor, a significant amount of the energy travels outwards and can be heard throughout vast areas of the ocean. The environmental problems created by these noise invasions are not fully understood, but we do know that these intense sounds threaten the habitats of endangered whales and commercial fisheries. Seismic surveys have been shown to disrupt essential behavior in endangered whales and cause catch rates of some commercial fish to plummet. To mitigate these impacts, NRDC recommends that airguns be kept out of sensitive areas and that greener alternatives be promoted, some of which are already well into development and could be made commercially available within a few years.
Get document in pdf.
Protecting Whales from Dangerous Sonar
NRDC takes the U.S. military to court to save marine mammals from underwater noise

News
NRDC has been fighting for more than a decade for prudent safeguards that would protect whales and other marine mammals from military sonar exercises -- eventually taking the fight all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Whale Songs in the City
Whales have been recorded singing near New York harbor, but noise pollution and shipping traffic put them at risk

News
Whales have been recorded singing near New York harbor, but noise pollution puts them at risk.

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NRDC experts write about the growing risks to the health of our oceans on the NRDC blog.


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