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Riled Up is a journal of science, the environment, exploration, new technology, and related commentary.  Contributors include scientists, explorers, engineers, and others who provide perspectives and context not typically offered in general news circulation.  For interested readers, additional resources are included.

The Conservation Alliance

The Last Ocean

The Last Ocean

Emperor Penguins, Ross Sea, Antarctica (credit: The Last Ocean & MountainFilm)

 

A proposal was pending to create the world's largest marine sanctuary within the Ross Sea off Antarctica. Scientific concerns had been growing over the potential for overfishing and pollution of the pristine oceanic region. Protecting the Ross Sea, often referred to as "the last ocean", was  championed by environmental organizations, including Mission Blue and the Antarctic and Southern Ocean Coalition. A unanimous decision was announced to protect the zone.

A new marine protected area (MPA), consisting of nearly 600,000 square miles or more than twice the size of Texas, will be established in the Southern Ocean. It will protect everything from penguins to whales and from sea birds to fish. According to the Coalition:

the new reserve will limit or entirely prohibit, certain commercial activities in order to meet specific conservation, habitat protection, ecosystem monitoring, and fisheries management objectives.

Environmental news is often discouraging but this decision creating the Antarctic reserve needs to be celebrated. Now 'the last ocean' must be well monitored to protect against violations of this sound conservation agreement. A short documentary was produced about The Last Ocean. WHB

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