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Goal: 45,000 Progress: 34,616
Sponsored by: The Rainforest Site

Over the past 250 years, humans have pumped increasing amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere. While science and industry scramble to understand the full impact, oceans continue to absorb as much as a quarter — approximately 530 billion tons — of this excess gas.

Extra CO2 increases acidity, reducing the amount of calcium carbonate in the water. Shell fish and coral reef, which rely on this mineral to build their shells and skeletons, are especially vulnerable to this process. Many larger fish rely on tiny marine snails and coral for food and shelter, so the effects of ocean acidification reverberate up the food chain, further depleting already struggling fish stocks.

As part of a multi-faceted solution, petition the Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service to designate additional Marine Protected Areas — "national parks for the sea" — providing marine life with a refuge and a fighting chance against this emerging threat.

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Dear Director Ashe:

While governments and international organizations debate the political intricacies of carbon emissions, Earth's oceans continue to absorb massive quantities of carbon dioxide, resulting in increasingly acidic waters. This process, known as ocean acidification, threatens marine ecosystems throughout the world.

As a global problem, ocean acidification demands a global solution. Your organization, however, enjoys a unique position to grant immediate respite to marine life through the designation of additional Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). A number of statutes—including the Endangered Species Act (1973), the Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act (1934) and the Wilderness Act (1964)—endow the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with the authority and flexibility to create new federal MPAs. In these protected zones, marine ecosystems have proven more resilient against global threats, such as warming seas and ocean acidification.

MPAs are not a panacea for ocean acidification, but as part of a coordinated response including local organizations and the international community, they do offer a short-term plan to reverse current trends. In the past, MPAs have also demonstrated unanticipated practical benefits, such as fish spillover and larval drift, helping to replenish fish stocks well beyond the area's designated boundaries. Additionally, these zones could help raise public awareness around the issue of acidification—the "hidden side" of the world's carbon crisis.

Given the imminence of ocean acidification, we cannot afford to wait for international consensus on carbon emissions. Additional MPAs offer an immediate and practical first step, and I hope your agency will exercise its legal authority to protect Earth's oceans and all who depend on them.

Petition Signatures


May 21, 2017 (Name not displayed)
May 20, 2017 James Deschene
May 20, 2017 Shirley Troia
May 18, 2017 Leslie Pfost
May 16, 2017 Alyssa Walls
May 15, 2017 Shahir Omar Please help save this dying ecosystem.
May 15, 2017 Artur Xavier
May 10, 2017 Lix Tuls lixl0000000@gmail.com
May 10, 2017 Charmaine Shannon
May 10, 2017 Sławomir Prucnal
May 9, 2017 Suzanne Salerno
May 9, 2017 Mary Salerno
May 5, 2017 Michalla Sutton
May 5, 2017 Thao Vu
May 3, 2017 (Name not displayed)
May 3, 2017 Nancy Wein
May 3, 2017 Suzanne Stephens
May 1, 2017 Raleigh koritz
May 1, 2017 (Name not displayed)
May 1, 2017 jude lotz
Apr 30, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 27, 2017 Louise Simone
Apr 26, 2017 miki takada
Apr 26, 2017 Jennifer Hale
Apr 25, 2017 sara Elkins
Apr 21, 2017 Jewell Batway
Apr 20, 2017 Kalliope M.
Apr 18, 2017 Tanja Gistl
Apr 16, 2017 Kerlyn Quesada Vargas
Apr 16, 2017 Mandi Carlson
Apr 16, 2017 (Name not displayed) help these lil creatures
Apr 14, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 14, 2017 Natasha Jenkins
Apr 12, 2017 DIANA Poe
Apr 12, 2017 Erin Kennedy
Apr 11, 2017 Joanna Prideaux
Apr 11, 2017 Lily Dayan Cimadoro
Apr 9, 2017 Rachel Taberner
Apr 8, 2017 Anne-Marie Battaglia
Apr 5, 2017 Kelly Davidson
Apr 5, 2017 Susan Fisher
Apr 3, 2017 melissa suarez
Apr 3, 2017 Kathleen Turner
Apr 3, 2017 Æola Ross
Apr 3, 2017 melanie ringel
Apr 3, 2017 Lisa Frey Please protect our oceans!
Apr 2, 2017 April Modesti
Apr 2, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Apr 2, 2017 Holly Groach
Apr 1, 2017 Tanja Gistl

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