Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are the cornerstone of ocean conservation. SEATOPIA is dedicating 1% of sales towards helping promote, manage, and establish new MPAs in line with the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) efforts to create global networks of well managed MPAs around the world protecting at least 30% of the world's oceans.
Studies have shown that at least 26% of our oceans need urgent conservation attention to preserve Earth’s marine biodiversity. Currently, one-third of all marine species have less than 10% of their range covered by protected areas.
MPAs involve the protective management of natural areas according to pre-defined management objectives and come in a variety of configurations and are established, maintained, and managed by all levels of the government. There are ocean parks, wildlife refuges, research facilities, and marine sanctuaries all focused on protected areas of seas, oceans, estuaries, and other marine environments. MPAs may be set up to protect ecosystems, sustain fisheries production, biodiversity conservation, species protection or preserve cultural resources (i.e. archaeological sites). They are created by delineating zones with permitted and non-permitted uses within that zone. It is vital to have the support of the public and established techniques for surveillance and monitoring of compliance. SEATOPIA engages in advocating for the expansion of the MPA network and its management through reliable science and by engaging with local stakeholders.
With overfishing as an indisputable pressure on the worlds oceans, we need to use a broad range of strategies such as no-fishing zones, eco-tourism, community marine reserves, and broad-scale policies to put an end to illegal and unsustainable commercial fishing operations. On a parallel track SEATOPIA is doing our part by working only with "smart aquaculture farms" focused on humane and sustainable practices. Supporting artisan aquaculturists who resisted the temptations of industrial-scale feed-lot operations, to instead focus on low-density open farms, antibiotic-free operations, innovative algae-based feeds and multi-trophic marine-permaculture systems, we are directly mitigating pressure on wild stock populations. We are paving the way for a new model of working symbiotically with the oceans as traditional models of simply extracting from the oceans.
In tandem, we believe that investing at least 1% of sales into ocean conservation projects is essential. Millions of people around the blue planet depend on marine biodiversity as a crucial source of food and income. It's our passion and mission to ensure these ecosystems are protected and helping to create more well managed MPAs. Your subscription to the Seatopia Collective will supports these projects, and in turn, help advance ocean conservation for generations to come.
Green Sea Turtles gliding in the currents of an offshore sea mount in the Galapagos Island Marine Park. Photographed by SEATOPIA Co-Founder James Arthur Smith.