Global Ocean Legacy

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The ocean covers nearly three-fourths of the globe and is home to nearly a quarter of the world’s known species, with countless yet to be discovered. The ocean helps support more than 250 million people who depend directly or indirectly on fishing for their livelihoods, and provides the main source of animal protein to more than 2.6 billion people.

The ocean plays an essential role in sustaining life on our planet, but human activities are increasingly threatening its health. Research shows that very large, fully protected marine reserves are key to rebuilding species abundance and diversity and protecting the overall health of the marine environment.

Global Ocean Legacy, a project of Pew and its partners, is working with local communities, governments and scientists around the world to protect and conserve some of our most important and unspoiled ocean environments.

Together we are establishing the world’s first generation of great marine parks by securing the designation of large, fully protected reserves. To date, our efforts have helped to safeguard 6.3 million square kilometers of ocean—an area 12 times the size of Central America.

Our Work

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  • Celebrating 10 Years of Global Ocean Legacy’s Commitment to Ocean Protection

    Since 2006, The Pew Charitable Trusts Global Ocean Legacy project has worked with indigenous groups, community leaders, government officials, scientists and other organizations to help protect the ocean; a part of the planet that is key to some island cultures and marine life. The Global Ocean Legacy campaign has aided in the creation of nine major marine reserves: Palau, Chagos, Coral Sea,... Read More

  • Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve

    Traditional and cultural non-commercial fishing by the Pitcairn Islanders and their visitors is permitted in the territorial seas of all the islands, which extend out 12 nautical miles from each. Such fishing is also allowed within 2 nautical miles of the summit of 40 Mile Reef and in the transit zone between Pitcairn and 40 Mile Reef. Read More

  • Views of a Remote Island: Pitcairn in Pictures

    On a map, Pitcairn Islands appear as a green pinprick in the blue expanse of the South Pacific Ocean. But the small islands make up one of the largest areas of protected ocean on the planet. At around 320,465 square miles (830,000 square kilometers), the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve is almost 3.5 times the size of the United Kingdom. Read More

Where We Work

Global Ocean Legacy works with local communities, governments and scientists around the world to protect and conserve some of our most important and unspoiled ocean environments.

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Media Contact

Laura Margison

Director, Communications

202.540.6395

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