Ocean Victories and a Thank You

ocean sunsetThese days we need to do everything we can to protect and restore the ocean. One of the reasons I love nonprofit groups like Oceana and the Ocean Conservancy is that they work with politicians, lawyers, and businesses from all over the world to create real environmental change. So for some good news, here are a few ocean victories that came about this year:

Cape Cod oceanDeep-Sea Trawling Ban Protects 4.9 million km2 in European Oceans: Oceana in Europe campaigned with the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition to prohibit deep sea bottom trawling in northeast Atlantic waters. Bottom trawling is an invasive fishing practice that rakes the seafloor while catching unwanted ocean life and damaging coral. The European Parliament, Council and Commission reached an agreement that bans all trawling below 800 meters while halting bottom fishing activity below 400 meters if the presence of vulnerable marine ecosystems is demonstrated. These actions protect an area that’s larger than the European Union.

Offshore Drilling: The Obama administration removed Atlantic and Arctic Ocean areas from a five-year program (2017 to 2022) for oil and gas development on the Outer Continental Shelf. The decision protects Arctic wildlife found nowhere else on Earth, including polar bears, bearded seals, walruses, and bowhead whales.

Cape Cod oceanHabitat Protection in the Strait of Sicily: Three Fisheries Restricted Areas were created in the Strait of Sicily, protecting 1,493 square km between Italy, Malta, and Tunisia from bottom trawling and preserving nursery areas for hake and deep-sea rose shrimp. The commission also prohibited commercial harvest of red coral. These decisions will help protect vulnerable habitats and allow fisheries in Mediterranean marine ecosystems to recover.

No matter how huge or tiny the victories, these days we need to keep fighting for the causes that are important to us. Because of that, a percentage from the sale of Ocean Echoes will go toward nonprofit organizations working to protect and restore the world’s oceans for future generations.

Thank you to Carrie Rubin, Britt Skrabanek, Charissa Stastny, and Review Tales for your reviews of Ocean Echoes. It means so much to me that you took the time to write a review. If you’re not familiar with their blogs (or their books), please check them out. I highly recommend their books.

Congratulations to Annika Perry for winning the recent drawing held at Jill Weatherholt’s blog for a free Ocean Echoes e-book. To anyone who didn’t win, if you’re a member of Kindle Unlimited you can download it for free until January 10. I’m hoping the paperback will be out next week.

Wishing everyone a holiday season filled with love and hugs

22 thoughts on “Ocean Victories and a Thank You

  1. How wonderful to see these victories. I worry about what will happen with environmental issues in the next four years. Hopefully we won’t backslide.

    Thank you so much for the mention! I loved Ocean Echoes. You have a great writing future ahead of you!

    • Thanks Carrie! I know what you mean – I’m worried about what could happen too, but that makes me want to fight for the environment even more than usual. It would be horrible to see any kind of a backslide now. Thanks so much for saying that about the book. I loved your books and I’m excited for the next one!

  2. Each tiny victory adds up. Thank you for bringing these to our attention, Sheila. You’re making a difference through your writing and that’s a big victory!
    Thanks again for the wonderful visit to my blog. You’re welcome anytime.
    Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a peaceful new year! xo

    • Thanks so much Jill! Sometimes it’s hard to tell if we’re making any kind of a difference at all, but then I have to remind myself that everything we do makes a difference. Thank you for inviting me over there – I had lots of fun visiting and now I’ll look forward to your Cape Cod visit! Wishing you and your family a magical Christmas and lots of happiness in the new year – love and hugs!

  3. Love how your blog and book mesh so well together. Your book did open up my eyes to environmental issues, especially regarding the ocean. It was so enlightening.

    • Thanks Char! It’s funny to think of, but if I happened to live anyplace else, I wouldn’t have written it. It was fun to write because I learned more about the ocean too. I just finished reading Between Hope & the Highway and loved traveling to the Montana horse ranch for a change of scene!

    • Yay – sometimes it feels like there are just small steps forward but the ones this year were huge! Those organizations give me hope and I love being able to sign the petitions to feel part of that change. I know you sign them too so let’s keep it up – it does make a difference! Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas and happy new year – love and hugs!

    • Yes! Usually any progress feels much too slow, but then it helps to look back and see that progress is still being made (and there are always more victories to look forward to)!

  4. It’s so great that you highlight the good work these organizations are doing, not only in your blog but by giving profits from your book (which was just great!). Someone said in a documentary on the ocean (can’t remember which one now) that a lot of people don’t care about the pollution and life in the ocean because they can’t see it – all they see is a blue expansive surface and don’t think about the incredible world beneath. I thought that was interesting.

    As one of your readers, thanks for such a great read, Sheila – and wishing you happy holidays too!

    • Thanks Letizia – I’m glad you enjoyed the book! That’s true that we can’t always tell when there’s something wrong with the ocean, and we’d probably rather think of it as healthy. I hadn’t fully realized how important the ocean is to our health until I started researching. Wishing you a happy Christmas and new year with love and lots of furry hugs!

  5. Woot, woot for the ocean victories! Thanks so much for the shout-out love. Sorry I’m just now seeing this. Been so behind on blog reading, but I was missing everyone so much…I finally sat down with my laptop to do some catching up.

    Your book was fantastic. I was just going over edits on my WIP with my awesome mother-in-law, Mary Jo Malo (I think you guys are friends on Twitter), on the phone the other day. I told her how great your book was and she said she was excited to read it.

    For real, I can’t wait to read your next one too! xo

    • Thanks Britt! I’ve been behind on the blog stuff too – the Christmas craziness took over like usual. 🙂 Thanks so much for saying that about the book and for your review. I had a feeling Mary Jo might be your mom or mom-in-law. That’s so nice that you guys get to do the social media stuff together. I hope you had a fun Christmas (with or without goats)! I’m looking forward to reading your next book – love and hugs for the New Year!

    • Thank you for making me laugh! I’m far behind on everything, like usual. We’ll just have to keep laughing at ourselves while enjoying the craziness. I hope everything’s going well with your book and artwork!

  6. I love that you’re sharing GOOD news here about the oceans 🙂 So many times I only get presented with articles about the negative happenings of the environment

    • Thanks Christy! Sorry I was out of town (drove through Canada a little bit to Michigan), then sick so I haven’t been around in a while. The positive environmental news at least gives me some hope and makes me think that we can change the world after all. Those ocean conservation groups really help by bringing all the individual voices together. I hope everything’s been going well with you!

  7. Pingback: Ocean Victories and a Thank You — Sheila Hurst | huggers.ca

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