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Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary

Our nation’s largest national marine sanctuary, and second largest marine protected area, stretching from Marin county - north of San Francisco - to San Luis Obispo county, encompassing 275 miles of coastline.

Major programmatic initiatives:

  • Ecosystem-Based Management
    Our coastal and marine environments are changing and face many threats. Ecosystem-based management, considering entire ecosystems rather than managing single issues or resources, is an innovative approach integrating ecological, social and economic factors. Efforts in this area link to the National Ocean Policy as well as the California’s Ocean Protection Council strategic action plan (2012-2017.)

  • Water Quality
    Significant energy and focus is applied to addressing the land-sea connections impacting coastal water quality. Integrated regional water management programs, citizen watershed monitoring programs and collaborations with the agricultural community, cities and local municipalities are all components of this strategic priority. The programs are widely acclaimed as a great working example of the value of collective agency, nonprofit and citizen collaboration. We have many partnerships including the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture – Natural Resources Conservation Service, Resource Conservation Districts, the California Department of Water Resources, CA State Water Resources Control Boards, local municipalities and many others.

  • Science-Based Monitoring and Reporting
    Monitoring and reporting on the health of the ocean ecosystem, communicating the outcomes of research and science activities from many organizations to resource managers, policy makers, academia and the general public. The Sanctuary Integrated Monitoring Network (SIMoN) is a National Marine Sanctuary Program model for comparable efforts elsewhere, including the Gulf of the Farallones, Cordell Banks and Channel Islands sanctuaries. SIMoN’s database resources and communication methods have also been used as the model for the national ocean observing system.

  • Education and Outreach with an emphasis on the recently designated state marine protected areas and the new Santa Cruz Sanctuary Exploration Center
    Since 2007, the Foundation has coordinated an education and outreach program for California’s network of marine protected areas, established as part of the Marine Life Protection Act. In 2012, the new Monterey Bay Sanctuary Exploration Center opened in Santa Cruz, CA. CMSF continues to play an important role in the Sanctuary Exploration Center’s operations.

Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary website: www.MontereyBay.noaa.gov

Scientific Research & Monitoring (SIMoN)
Water Quality
Sanctuary Exploration Center
Marine Protected Areas and the California Marine Life Protection Act

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