Target: North Pacific Fishery Management Council
Goal: Protect the Bering Sea canyons and preserve fish, sea lion, and whale habitats
Situated between Russia and Alaska, the Bering Sea is a vital habitat and home to whales and sea lions. The underwater canyons provide deep-sea shelter and natural resources for these and many other creatures of the sea. The Bering sea provides a majority of the fish we eat in the United States. We must prevent over-fishing and the destruction of delicate sea corals to save this thriving ecosystem.
The canyons of the Bering Sea are larger than the Grand Canyon in Arizona. However, unlike the Grand Canyon, the Bering Sea is not protected by national law. Most of the fish caught and eaten in the United States comes from this region off the coast of Alaska. Fishing gear has been destroying the sponge and coral habitats in the underwater canyons. Unless fishermen utilize safer fishing practices, those fragile species will cease to exist.
The Bering Sea’s rare canyon system ensures an abundance and diversity of fish species. At this time, environmental leader Greenpeace is leading a worldwide effort to establish at least 40% of our oceans for marine reserves. Marine reserves work much like the national park systems of the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Yosemite. Less than 1% of the world’s oceans are currently protected as marine reserves.
Sign the below petition to urge the North Pacific Fishery Management Council to protect the Bering Sea canyons and preserve the species that depend upon them for survival. Help the Bering Sea be an example to other ocean waterways around the world striving to achieve marine reserve status.
Dear North Pacific Fishery Management Council,
I understand that you are tasked with the responsibility of managing the national resources in the Bering Sea and thank you for your preservation efforts thus far. I am urging you to support legislation that provides for marine reserves throughout the Bering Sea.
If we can protect the fragile corals and sponges in the sea’s canyons, we can prolong and improve the lives of fish, whales, and other sea life in the region. Since the United States depends upon the Bering Sea for a majority of its seafood, it is important that we take steps now to preserve the sea’s resources for the future.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Mikenortonvia WikiMedia