News, opinions, photos and facts from Ocean Conservancy
About Janis Searles Jones
Janis Searles Jones is Ocean Conservancy's CEO. A respected expert in the marine conservation field, Janis has provided Congressional testimony and is a frequent speaker at conferences all over the United States. She also authored chapters on sustainable use of ocean resources in "Ocean and Coastal Law and Policy" and "Ecosystem-based Management for the Oceans."
For many of us, the ocean is a place of hope—it inspires us and supports us and in turn, we work hard to protect it. 2016 has been quite a year, full of ups and downs. But when it comes to the ocean, 2016 was a year of fantastic victories that remind us what is possible when we come together in support of our ocean, and give us hope for our ocean’s future.
“We the People of the United States, in order to form more perfect protection of our ocean…”
Let’s take a break from election coverage and come together as one nation in love with the ocean.
Regardless of our politics, we can all agree that the ocean is important. From sea to shining sea, we depend on the ocean for our food supply, the air we breathe, our economy and our ability to protect our shores against storms. That’s why I’m asking you to show your ocean pride and vote for the future of the ocean today.
A year ago, President Obama became the first sitting US President to visit the Arctic.
He stood on the banks of Bristol Bay with a freshly caught salmon in hand, joined schoolchildren in a traditional Yup’ik dance, and stood at the toe of the rapidly shrinking Exit Glacier. He experienced awe-inspiring Alaska with its rich cultures and traditions that depend on a healthy, thriving environment. He also saw the effects of climate change firsthand from the ecological impacts of a receding glacier to a village forced to relocate because of severe coastal erosion.
After that trip President Obama said, “What’s happening in Alaska is happening to us…it’s our wakeup call.”
This has been a landmark year for the ocean. The tireless work of ocean advocates—like you—has resulted in a series of victories moving us towards a cleaner, healthier ocean for the communities and animals that depend on it. Here at Ocean Conservancy, we’ve had quite a busy year, and we’re proud to have played our part in working towards a better ocean.
Ocean Conservancy expresses condolences to the family and friends of Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) for their loss at his passing. Senator Lautenberg was a tireless protector of not just New Jersey, but all of our waters and coastlines. He was a true environmental champion who will be sorely missed by all those who care about our ocean. During his long career, he built an incredible legacy of conservation. Here are just few key highlights:
He introduced and passed the Federal Ocean Acidification Research and Monitoring Act so that the government could be begin coordinating research on the changing chemistry of the ocean.
He successfully fought to improve water quality and curb ocean dumping of sewage and plastics.
He wrote and passed the BEACH Act, a law to improve water quality monitoring standards and make sure the public is informed about the safety of their beaches.
He was a strong advocate for action to reduce pollution and tackle climate change, pushing for a clean energy future, reducing carbon pollution and promoting renewable energy.
He was a tireless advocate for the prevention of oil spills, and was part of congressional efforts to put in place tighter regulations, and to get companies to use stronger “double-hulled tankers” to prevent oil spills. He worked to prevent offshore oil drilling along the Atlantic coast.
As the Chairman of the Senate subcommittee with jurisdiction over the regulation of toxic chemicals, Senator Lautenberg held hearings and introduced legislation to put the burden on chemical companies to provide data to the EPA so that Americans can be assured the chemicals they are exposed to are safe. He was a champion for the public’s right to know more about the pollution being released into their neighborhoods and created the Toxic Release Inventory.
He introduced and passed the Coastal and Estuarine Land Protection Act to awards grants to states with approved coastal management programs to protect environmentally sensitive lands.
Senator Lautenberg stands on the Asbury Park Boardwalk with Rep. Frank Pallone and others to call for full funding for BEACH Act grants and push new federal legislation that would strengthen existing water quality protection programs.(August 23, 2012) www.lautenberg.senate.gov