Protecting Our Oceans

Half the oxygen we breathe comes from our oceans.

One of our world’s most stunning features, they cover more than 70 percent of the planet, comprise 99 percent of its habitable space, and house the greatest diversity of major plant, animal, and microbial species, from the simplest to the mightiest on earth.

Their importance to all life cannot be underestimated. Oceans regulate the climate, produce half of the earth’s breathable oxygen, and are a huge source of food. For the one billion coastal humans who depend directly upon them, the oceans are life itself.

And because of some pretty careless industrial human activity, our oceans are in a lot of trouble right now.

We’ve made significant progress to turn the tide towards ocean conservation, but a lot more needs to be done in a short time. By working together, we can save the oceans.

Ensuring Sustainable Seafood

The problems taxing the ocean are caused directly by what's available at the seafood counter. As demand for fish grows, destructive fishing and aquaculture continue to increase to meet the demand. We are working to change seafood choices made at a wholesale level by working with supermarket retailers to make sustainable seafood the only choice available. Read more

Spotlight on Tuna

Tuna is one of the world's favorite fish. It provides a critical part of the diet for millions of people, as well as being at the core of the world's luxury sashimi markets. But, did you know that globally tuna stocks are under threat, or that the tuna industry is one of the main drivers behind the shark fin trade?/p>

Our appetite for tuna is pushing several species of sharks, turtles, and tuna closer and closer to extinction. As more and more people consume tuna there has been a surge in the number and capacity of tuna-fishing vessels across the world. Read more

Saving Whales

A few countries, namely Japan, Norway and Iceland, continue to ignore a 1986 moratorium on commercial whaling—every year they kill thousands of whales to feed a black market of illegal whale meat.

For more than 40 years Greenpeace has been at the forefront of the fight to end this needless slaughter of one the most magnificent creatures on the planet. We are working to ensure that the Obama administration uses their diplomatic leverage to close the loopholes and end all commercial whaling. Read more

The Bering Sea

The waters of the Bering Sea-—between Alaska and Russia— are a rich marine environment that’s home to a diverse array of wildlife. Polar bears, seals, sea lions, walruses, whales and millions of seabirds make their home here.

The Bering Sea is also one of the most productive fishing spots in the world. But, the fragile ecosystem cannot sustain this level of commercial fishing without paying a price. Read more

The Solution is Marine Reserves

In order to protect the world’s oceans, portions of it have to be left alone. A marine reserve is like putting a giant “Do Not Disturb” sign around an area of the ocean. These protected areas are so important to the future of our oceans—giving wildlife a safe haven free from danger.

We are working to convince governments and the United Nations that marine reserves are critical to the oceans' future. We are advocating for setting aside 40% of the world’s oceans as marine reserves. Read more


The latest updates


Endangered Steller Sea Lions Under Attack by Alaska Senator - Again

Media release | October 23, 2000 at 18:00

Greenpeace today denounced the second attempt by Senator Stevens (AK) to introduce a rider that would drive the endangered Steller sea lion further toward extinction. If passed, the rider would exempt the North Pacific groundfish fisheries from...

Japanese Fleet Kills 48 Endangered Whales

Media release | September 19, 2000 at 18:00

The Japanese whaling fleet ended its widely-condemned hunt on Saturday after killing 88 whales including 43 Bryde's and five sperm, both of which are endangered. The expanded hunt is the impetus behind U.S. moves to impose economic sanctions...

Japan's Illegal Whale Hunt Focus of Growing International Opposition

Media release | August 29, 2000 at 18:00

Japan's expanded illegal whale hunt is the focus today of Greenpeace protests in 19 countries around the world, from Luxembourg to Japan. Greenpeace has been joined by the leaders of 15 nations in calling on Japan to immediately halt its whaling...

Economic Sanctions Against Japan at Heart of Whaling Protest

Media release | August 16, 2000 at 18:00

A 110-foot inflatable whale placed in Dupont Circle formed the centerpiece of a Greenpeace protest today against Japan's expanded whale hunt, currently taking place in the North Pacific. The environmental organization is calling on the Clinton...

Japan Openly Defies U.S. and UK to Begin a New Whale Hunt in the North Pacific

Media release | July 28, 2000 at 18:00

Greenpeace today condemns Japan's latest act of defiance of the International Whaling Commission, its allies, and world opinion. Greenpeace calls on the U.S. government to begin the process of certifying Japan under the Pelly Amendment to the...

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