WASHINGTON (June 17, 2014)--President Obama today proposed expanding protections in the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument. The expansion would shelter some of the world's most pristine and biologically rich marine ecosystems.
Frances Beinecke, President of the Natural Resources Defense Council, made the following statement:
“The President’s proposed action is a huge step forward for the ocean. Expanding these protections will provide a safe haven for coral gardens, seamounts, and the rich waters that support hundreds of species of fish, sea turtles, giant clams, dolphins, whales and sharks, conserving them for future generations. This represents a commitment to the kind of bold action needed to restore the failing health of our ocean, on which we all depend, and continues the bipartisan tradition of ocean protection. We hope it sets the stage for taking similar action to protect key areas of our ocean around the US and the world. Marine protected areas have been shown to help protect and restore marine wildlife and fish. Healthy fisheries are important to people everywhere.”
The President also announced a comprehensive six month review of steps the US can take to stop illegal fishing, which does untold damage to marine ecosystems and to coastal nations around the world. “This step is an important recognition of the enormous damage wrought by illegal fishing around the world,” Beinecke said.