Ocean life is a critical component of humanity’s life support system, generating half of the oxygen we breath, providing food for billions, and capturing much of our carbon pollution, among many other benefits. But we’re destroying its ability to provide for us because of overexploitation, and global warming. Yet only 5% of the ocean is currently protected. Fully protected marine reserves have been shown to restore ocean life and all the benefits it provides to people, including food, economic revenue (e.g., ecotourism and enhanced fishing), and human well-being. Working with local partners and governments, National Geographic Pristine Seas has helped to protect 21 areas covering 5.3 million km2 (over half the size of the U.S.) since 2008. We’ll scale up our change model to help double the ocean area that is presently fully protected, to protect biodiversity, improve food provision, carbon storage, and other key ecosystem services for people worldwide.
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