Marine Reserves

Sayonara, Nagoya: UN biodiversity summit closes

Posted by jamie — 1 November 2010 at 1:47pm - Comments

Nathalie Rey (pictured above briefing journalists) is an Amsterdam-based Oceans Policy Analyst who led Greenpeace's delegation in Nagoya for the CBD. She is the proud mother of two daughters, an avid coffee drinker and a surprised fan of Japanese food.

After two weeks of negotiations, this Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has concluded and not without some last-minute drama. Unsurprisingly, a lot of the contentious issues were left to the last day. Delegates, media and observers were told that the Friday afternoon plenary discussion was to begin at 3pm. That meant that the 197 nations gathered here would have to agree a new Protocol, decide the future of protected areas on land and at sea and sign off on a new Strategic Plan for the CBD all in less than three hours.

For all of you out there who haven't sat through these talks for the past two weeks, I assure you that this seemed like an impossible feat when they announced it on Thursday.

Defending our Pacific at the UN biodiversity summit

Posted by jamie — 21 October 2010 at 5:35pm - Comments

Seni Nabou is a political advisor at our Australia-Pacific office, based in Fiji. She is currently part of the Greenpeace delegation at the Convention on Biological Diversity meeting in Nagoya, Japan.

Rescuing our oceans, in the International Year of Biodiversity

Posted by Willie — 14 October 2010 at 3:36pm - Comments

Explore our new interactive map - with videos and slideshows explaining why our oceans need Marine Reserves now.

New reports question if there are plenty more fish in the sea

Posted by Willie — 4 August 2010 at 10:57am - Comments

Not plenty more where that came from © Greenpeace/Cobb

If you're reading this in the UK, you ran out of fish today.

Basically, the UK eats more fish than its waters produce and, thanks to some nifty fish-counting from the clever folks at NEF, that equates to the 4th of August being the day we use up our year's fish supply. In comparison to the EU as a whole, we fair a month better but then we are a country with quite a lot of seas, certainly in comparison with, er, Austria and Romania. Yet, for almost five full months we are relying on fish from somewhere else. And that might be okay, if there was plenty of it to go around. But of course, as the old saying should go, there aren't plenty more fish in the sea.

Video: what happens when grappling hook meets leg

Posted by jamie — 7 June 2010 at 1:48pm - Comments

For a taste of the violence Greenpeace activists encountered on Friday as they tried to free bluefin tuna from purse-seine fishing nets, look no further than the video below. But be warned: there are some close-up images of a serious injury which are liable to make you lose your lunch.

We just had a discussion about whether to promote this video. Other Greenpeace offices have chosen to use it (including our Turkish colleagues, hence the Turkish title) although it's quite close to the knuckle (or shin bone, to be more precise). Yet it shows not only the determination of everyone on board our two ships to put the brakes on the extinction of bluefin tuna, but also the violence and intimidation they've been confronted with. So here it is.

Rainbow Warrior sails the Med to help bluefin tuna's holiday romance

Posted by Willie — 21 May 2010 at 12:18pm - Comments

An ex-bluefin tuna found during the Rainbow Warrior's previous visit to the Mediterranean in 2007 © Greenpeace/Care

Imagine you are an Atlantic bluefin tuna. You've been out at sea most of the year in cooler waters, feeding away and generally getting on with being a big ol' fish at the top of your food chain. You have not a care in the world, save the occasional orca or shark scare.

Then spring is sprung, and the urge takes you. Forces you don't really understand compel you to head back to warmer waters, and a certain key place, sacred to you bluefin. The bluefin equivalent of a romantic dinner and some subdued lighting is a sheltered warm sea, and conditions have to be perfect, or it ain't happening. But even that's not enough. Because of the, er, messy, way most fish reproduce, they congregate together, and only release sperm and eggs when the time and the temperature is right: 23 degrees Celsius. It's the perfect temperature for a bluefin love-in.

UK creates world’s largest marine reserve

Posted by Willie — 1 April 2010 at 7:53pm - Comments

A green sea turtle © CC PiccoloNamek

Today is a good day for the oceans.

The UK has just created the world’s largest marine reserve, covering some quarter of a million square miles of ocean around the Chagos Archipelago.

Why Greenpeace supports a Marine Reserve in the Chagos

Posted by Willie — 2 March 2010 at 12:00pm - Comments

Greenpeace believes that there is an overwhelming case for giving full protection to the waters of the Chagos as a no-take Marine Reserve and has now formally responded to the UK government's consultation on the Chagos Islands Marine Protected Area.

But the UK Government consultation does not address everything that needs to be addressed in the Chagos Islands: The Chagossian people, who were removed from the islands prior to the creation of the Diego Garcia military base, are still fighting for justice. Early Greenpeace campaigner Rex Weyler tells that sorry tale in his blog here.

Help protect the Chagos and create the world's largest Marine Reserve

Posted by Willie — 2 February 2010 at 11:41am - Comments

An octopus adds its support to our Marine Reserves campaign

12 Feb update: consultaion extended until 5 March. Click this link to add your voice in support of the new Marine Reserve

The chances are you’ve never heard of the Chagos Islands, let alone ever been for a visit, but over the next few days we all have an opportunity to help protect the amazing life in the seas around them.

The Chagos archipelago is a group of 55 small islands in the Indian Ocean, that makes up Britain’s Indian Ocean Territory. The UK government is currently consulting on whether to establish a Marine Reserve in the waters around the Chagos – which, if created, would be the largest Marine Reserve in the world, covering around 210,000 square miles. Crucially that area includes half of the Indian Ocean’s pristine coral reefs, the world’s largest coral atoll, as well as charismatic critters like turtles, sharks, coconut crabs and seabirds. Not to mention well over 200 species of coral, and a thousand species of fish!

Is the UK finally getting serious on marine protection?

Posted by Willie — 19 November 2009 at 12:04pm - Comments

As you probably know by now, marine reserves have a huge role to play in ensuring a future for our oceans, which is why we fish-huggers campaign so vehemently for them.

The scientists tell us that between 20 and 50 per cent of the seas need to be set aside as fully protected, no-take zones – off-limits to all damaging and destructive activity. That means no mineral extraction, dredging, dumping or fishing.

Getting progress on marine reserves is a bit like juggling with Slinkys  – it's one of those issues where the politics seems to agree with you, but just manages to deliver precious little. Our politicians all say the right thing when it comes to protecting areas of our seas, there are international commitments, and deadlines for creating protected areas, and there is a huge public demand for doing so. Even the fishing industry is not 'in theory' opposed to them.

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