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EditPhoto Title:The Ocean
EditPhoto Description:Everyone on Earth needs a healthy ocean. If we don’t take care of it, we can’t take care of ourselves.
EditImage Url:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_16084886.jpg
EditImage Description:A view of the ocean its richness of corals from Viti Levu, Fiji. © William Crosse
EditPhoto Credit:© William Crosse
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The ocean makes life on Earth possible.

It nourishes our bodies and our souls. It influences our weather, fuels economies and connects distant lands. It is vast, deep, powerful and mysterious.

And it’s in trouble.

Why is the ocean important?

Jobs and Prosperity

Fishing. Shipping. Tourism. The ocean is a mighty economic engine that brings jobs and prosperity to all of us. And this includes tens of millions of the world’s most vulnerable people, who rely directly on the sea to make a living and to improve their lives.

Air We Breathe

The ocean is Earth’s life support system. It produces 50% of the planet’s oxygen, meaning that every other breath you take comes from the sea. It’s also a major part of the “water cycle,” which gives us the rain we need to survive. It’s simple but true: Without the ocean, we wouldn’t exist.

Food We Eat

More than 1 billion people depend on seafood as their main protein source. With global demand for food expected to nearly double by 2050, that number is only going to grow. To feed a hungry world, we’ll need to keep our oceans full of fish.

Climate Stability

Carbon dioxide and other atmospheric gases trap heat — just enough to keep Earth hospitable to life. But the oceans play a role in our climate, too. They store the vast majority of the carbon on Earth, including much of the extra carbon that people generate by burning fossil fuels and clearing forests. Without the ocean, Earth would be a sauna.


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EditSection Title:What are the issues?
EditSection Description:
EditSection ID (Anchor Tag): issues[Optional]

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EditCircle color:fact--blue    
EditCircle icon:icon-fish
EditResult value:30%
EditResult field:fisheries overexploited or depleted
EditText:Overfishing and damaging fishing practices
Taking more fish out of the ocean than it can provide is reckless. But that’s exactly what we’re doing — often in destructive ways like dredging up the ocean floor with nets or cutting fins off of sharks. As a result, around 30% of the world’s fisheries are overexploited or depleted.


EditCircle color:fact--brown    
EditCircle icon:icon-loon
EditResult value:
EditResult field:of coastal regions ruined
EditText:Destruction of coastal habitats
Coastal forests, tidal marshes and other shoreline ecosystems are Earth’s carbon sponges. Despite comprising just 2% of the ocean, they store 50% of its carbon. Yet we’re destroying them at an alarming rate — nearly one-third of coastal regions have already been ruined.


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EditCircle color:fact--gold    
EditCircle icon:icon-coral
EditResult value:75%
EditResult field:coral reefs threatened
EditText:Climate change
By absorbing heat and CO2 from the atmosphere, the ocean helps keep our climate stable. But the ocean is absorbing too much heat and CO2, making it warmer and more acidic. Already, 75% of coral reefs — vital fish spawning grounds and barriers against storms — are in danger of dissolving or dying out.


EditCircle color:fact--dark-green    
EditCircle icon:icon-trash
EditResult value:2x
EditResult field:garbage patch twice the size of Texas
All rivers run to the sea. But often, they are full of pollutants that wreck the ocean. Take “dead zones,” places in the sea where nothing can live because chemicals promote the growth of plants that suck up oxygen. Or the “garbage patch” where plastic from around the world floats to the north Pacific and becomes nature’s giant waste dump.
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CI’s solutions

We are constantly studying and measuring the ocean, using the latest methods and tools like the Ocean Health Index. In addition to helping create and strengthen marine protected areas and networks, CI works on new models for ocean management — in one case, working with more than 20 nations to manage an area of sea the size of the moon. We also work to end destructive fishing practices — like trawling, shark finning and overfishing — so that fish stay in our ocean for generations.

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Carousel Images


EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_31983532.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Crab fisherman in Barra, Brazil. © Cristina Mittermeier
EditCaption Title:Supporting Smallholder Fishing in Brazil
EditCaption Description:No-take zones improve overall fish stocks, so CI is working with municipalities to enforce marine protected areas and fisheries regulations.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/projects/pages/supporting-smallholder-fishing-in-brazil.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_63002536.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Bora Bora from above. © Rodolphe Holler
EditCaption Title:Pacific Oceanscape
EditCaption Description:Spanning an area four times the size of the United States, the Pacific Oceanscape is enormously important to all our lives.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/where/pages/pacific-oceanscape.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_87353676.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Fisherman cast a net to catch fish. © Kseniya Ragozina
EditCaption Title:Recovering Small-scale Fisheries in the Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape
EditCaption Description:When small-scale fisheries do not operate sustainably, they can disrupt economically important services and ​reduce jobs, incomes and food supplies.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/projects/pages/Recovering-Small-scale-Fisheries-in-the-Eastern-Tropical-Pacific-Seascape-etps.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_30526013.JPG
EditImage Alt Text:A colorful reef and snorkelers in Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea. © Jeff Yonover
EditCaption Title:Ocean Health Index
EditCaption Description:Published in 2012, the Ocean Health Index is the first world standard that gauges the capacity of our oceans to thrive and meet the needs of people.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/projects/pages/ocean-health-index.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_40802177.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Raja Ampat, Indonesia. © Burt Jones and Maurine Shimlock
EditCaption Title:Blue Carbon
EditCaption Description:Blue carbon science is identifying ecosystems that store the greatest amount of carbon and using that information to influence policy.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/projects/pages/mitigating-climate-change-on-coasts-blue-carbon.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_84406001.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Fish swimming in Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape, Cocos Island, Costa Rica. © CI/photo by Sterling Zumbrunn
EditCaption Title:Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape
EditCaption Description:The jewel of the Pacific Ocean is at risk of losing its luster — but we can turn things around.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/where/Pages/eastern-tropical-pacific-seascape.aspx[Optional]
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EditImage URL:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_65657554.jpg
EditImage Alt Text:Wayag Lagoon, Bird's Head Seascape, Indonesia. © Will Turner
EditCaption Title:Bird's Head Seascape
EditCaption Description:Its coral reefs and mangroves are the life support system of the people of West Papua, providing protein, jobs and coastal protection from storms and tsunamis.
EditRead More Text:Read More
EditRead More Link:/where/Pages/Birds-Head-Seascape-coral-triangle-papua-indonesia.aspx[Optional]
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EditCall to Action Title:HELP SAVE A MILE OF OCEAN
EditCall to Action Description:Oceans are damaged every day through overfishing, the destruction of coastal habitats, climate change and pollution. With your $75 donation, you can help create a healthier planet.
EditCall to Action Button Description:DONATE TODAY
EditCall to Action Button Link:/miles
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You can also help if you...

Call to Action 3 Across (with background images)

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EditModule Title:
EditBackground Image RenditionID:37
EditAnchor tag for sticky nav:[Optional]


Button Section

EditSection Title:Eat sustainable seafood
EditSection subtitle:Not all seafood is created equal. You can help keep fish in the ocean by eating only seafood that’s been sustainably sourced.
EditButton link:/pages/what-you-can-do-tips.aspx#eat-sustainable-seafood
EditButton text:Learn more
EditBackground image:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_57707930.jpg
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Button Section

EditSection Title:‘Every living thing here needs me. I’m the source.’
EditSection subtitle:The Ocean is the origin and engine of life on this planet. Now, it has a voice.
EditButton link:
EditButton text:Listen
EditBackground image:/sitecollectionimages/ci_73176763.png
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​Email Signup Centered

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More of Our Work Links

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EditAnchor tag for sticky nav:[Optional]
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EditImage RenditionID Webkit:22[Optional]
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Images Rows

First Image

EditImage Alt Text:Night falls over Rio de Janeiro. © Nikada
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Second Image

EditTitle:Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape
EditImage Alt Text:Fish swimming in Eastern Tropical Pacific Seascape, Cocos Island, Costa Rica, Central America. © Conservation International/photo by Sterling Zumbrunn
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Third Image

EditTitle:Pacific Oceanscape
EditImage Alt Text:Aerial view, Bora Bora. © Rodolphe Holler
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