National marine sanctuaries are similar to underwater national parks. Although fishing is allowed in many of them, offshore oil and gas drilling is banned in all of them, as is underwater mining and other activities that could harm wildlife or the environment. In the 45 years since President Richard Nixon started the program, no president has ever reduced or eliminated a national marine sanctuary.
National Marine Sanctuary
The marine environment globally is challenged by a number of factors, including environmental degradation, habitat destruction, overfishing, and climate change, so there is a real need for protection. Under the Convention on Biological Diversity, the international community has agreed that we will protect 10 percent of the oceans in marine protected areas by 2020.
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