Fit for the future

Fit for the future

We stand with everyone who wants healthy oceans for our children, who want marine life to thrive and the fishing industry to give jobs and a future for millions. We will be part of the movement that works to create and protect clean seas that bring life to our planet.

Healthy oceans can fight many impacts of climate change. Ocean sanctuaries, also known as marine reserves, teem with life,  their waters are healthier and better able to resist or absorb the impacts of climate change. Climate change is altering the very nature of the oceans, changes in water temperature are causing species to move to warmer or cooler waters and in some parts of the ocean damaging the building blocks of the food web. Powerful sea currents that regulate our weather are changing dramatically and the ice is melting at an increasing rate in the Arctic and areas of Antarctic.

Scientists warn the subsequent rising sea levels will flood low-lying land and wipe out entire islands in our lifetime.  Healthy bodies are better at fighting disease and it is the same for the oceans.  Find out how.

Letting science and common sense determine how many fish we can catch instead of allowing greedy industries and politicians to decide would end overfishing overnight!  Well, maybe not overnight, but a lot faster than we are now. Overfishingis the most obvious example of the worst kind of management of our natural resources. The experts already know there are too many boats chasing too few fish. Even the world’s favourite fish – tuna – is at risk.

The fishermen know it too, but rather than slow down, the majority of fishing companies are still netting and hooking faster than the fish can reproduce and we are already driving entire populations to collapse.  Once one stock is gone the boats simply move on to the next one. Modern technology has given us the capability to explore the ocean far more than ever before, but it has also equipped massive boats to search out fish stocks in the far reaches and depths of the oceans that, until now, nature had kept off limits. There is an imbalance. We are slowly exploring and learning about our oceans, while at the same time as the rate of exploitation accelerates, meaning that we may be destroying species before they have been discovered and described. So how can we bring back the balance?

Let’s make piracy history. Unfair fishingis a polite way to talk about pirates and cheats, who sail without licenses, without regulation or accountability, often in African waters and the Pacific.

And it is not just the masked sailors at sea who are stealing food from poor communities; it’s the company bosses on land as well. Greenpeace is naming and shaming the pirates and, with your help, can cut off their markets. Ending piracy starts here.

Knowing how your fish is caught and at what cost to other marine life, is as important and which fish and where it is landed. Bycatch is a technical name that in reality means an appalling, unnecessary waste of ocean life. Fishing companies often only want one or two particular species to sell. But their nets and trawls catch anything in their way.  More than 300,000 whales, dolphins and porpoises are caught and killed in nets every year. Turtles, sharks, other unwanted fish are trapped and then just shoved over the side, dead or dying. Sometimes the bycatch can account for as much as 90% of the haul. No sane farmer would use a machine that cuts down an entire orchard just for one apple – it should not happen at sea either. Destructive fishing not only affects the fish populations, but also other species and their ocean homes. There are many different fishing methods that result in huge levels of bycatch.

Read more about how stop turtles, whales and sharks drowning in fishing nets

Make politicians prove they are serious about marine protection by really ending whaling. Whales are icons of our oceans. Their story of being hunted to the brink of extinction, one species after another, is the lesson the fishing industry is refusing to learn. Millions of people were part of the global campaign to stop commercial whaling nearly thirty years ago. But like so many other ocean agreements – the rules are being bent and ignored, and still whales are hunted. Even more are killed as bycatch, through pollution and ship strikes. These mighty titans of the ocean are a warning about how we treat our seas - a warning that we can no longer ignore. Read the story of the whales.

If we stop using the oceans as a giant dumpsite it wouldn’t be choked with plastic, oil and chemicals.  We dump more garbage in the ocean than the weight of fish we take out. Pollutionon land has a massive impact at sea. Imagine a Trash Vortex about the size of Afghanistan, (or Texas, Turkey, the Ukraine or Zambia) endlessly swirling around, full of our plastic rubbish. It’s not imaginary – it’s real. Creeping dead zones in the ocean that can be seen from space are another direct result of our land-based habits. While oil spills at sea may grab the headlines, it is daily oil run-off from land that clogs up more ocean life. Find out where your garbage goes and if we have collected it

Ocean protection begins on land. It begins we each of us.

Along with eminent scientists from around the world, we believe that a global network of ocean sanctuaries (also called marine reserves), will give our oceans the breathing space they need to recover and keep our planet (and us) breathing in the future.

Join the call for oceans sanctuaries and find out what else you can do to be part of building oceans fit for the future.

The latest updates

 

Oil Spill Aftermath in the Bangladesh Sundarbans

Image | 11 December, 2014 at 14:30

The breathing roots of mangroves are covered by a sheet of black oil on the banks of the Sela River in Sundarbans, Bangladesh, a UNESCO World Heritage site, after an oil-tanker carrying 350,000 litres of furnace oil sank in the river after it had...

World Oceans Day Senegal

Image | 11 June, 2013 at 11:08

Greenpeace Africa activists together with Joal villagers and local fishermen celebrate World Oceans Day by creating a banner reading: 'Yes To Responsible Fishing' with paper fish. Expressing their commitment to sustainable fishing practices after...

Yellow Fin Tuna

Image | 2 October, 2012 at 17:01

A yellow fin tuna is pulled along side the Spanish longliner Herdusa no1 Vigo, South West Indian Ocean.

Humpback Whales in Indian Ocean

Image | 2 October, 2012 at 16:55

Humpback whales break the surface as they head south to Antarctica for the summer, 30th September 2012, Southern Indian Ocean.

"Dongwon's Destructive Fishing Starts Here"

Image | 23 September, 2012 at 18:00

Greenpeace activists unfurl a giant banner reading: "Dongwon's Destructive Fishing Starts Here", in front of the purse seine fishing vessel, 'MV Granada', belonging to Dongwon Industries, South Korea's largest canned tuna company, at the port of...

Whale Shark in Pacific Waters

Image | 27 March, 2012 at 12:59

A whale shark swims in the warm water off the coast of the Philippines. According to the Australian government, around 66% of whales and other toothed cetaceans die as a result of botched attempts to use whale sharks as lures for tuna. Greenpeace...

Dirk Diederik Action near Mauritania

Image | 15 March, 2012 at 16:35

Greenpeace activists have attached a floating device with text reading "Stop The Plunder" to the fishing nets of the Dutch super trawler Dirk Diederik, stopping its fishing operation 30 miles off the coast of Mauritania. West African waters have...

Banner At Abbot Point

Image | 12 March, 2012 at 9:23

Greenpeace activists and members of the local community lay out an 80x10 metre banner reading "Reef 'In Danger'" as the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) mission take a final flight over the controversial...

Protection for Pacific Fisheries

Image | 7 March, 2012 at 12:17

Greenpeace East Asia Taipei office released the hot air balloon at Dr. Sun-yat Sen Memorial Hall. Greenpeace urges the Taiwanese Fisheries Agency and other Asian fishing powers to protect the Pacific and its valuable tuna populations in the...

Pole and Line Sustainable Fishing

Image | 17 February, 2012 at 15:09

Crew on a pole and line vessel catch skipjack tuna in the water off Larantuka, Flores, Indonesia, 16th December 2011. Pole and line fisheries are one of the only true sustainable fishing methods on the planet with almost no by-catch.

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