US President Barack Obama on Thursday designated the country’s first marine national monument in the Atlantic Ocean that aims to protect fragile deep-sea ecosystems off the coast of New England.
Obama made this announcement at the third annual Our Ocean Conference in Washington DC hosted by Secretary of State John Kerry, a meeting that focuses on issues related to marine-protected areas, sustainable fisheries, marine pollution, and climate-related impacts on the ocean.
The new marine preserve, known as the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, will protect 12,725 square km of ecosystems encompassing three underwater canyons deeper than the Grand Canyon, and four underwater mountains.
Thursday’s designation followed Obama’s decision last month to expand the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument off the coast of Hawaii by 1.1 million square km, creating the world’s largest marine protected area.
the main aim of Obama is combating climate change and protecting our ocean, in a way that respects local communities, economies and native practices.