Our Focus in the Oceans

Our ocean covers more than 70% percent of the planet and is home to over 220,000 known species and another estimated 2 million undiscovered flora and fauna. Yet in the past few decades, climate change and pollution have endangered this habitat.

The UN’s latest Intergovernmental Report on Climate Change outlines the warming of the earth’s oceans surface since 1970, highlighting temperatures in the past 25 years increasing twice as fast. This rapid warming coincides with rising sea levels from ice loss in the arctic and more frequent marine heatwaves which together create a ripple effect through the ocean food chain, resulting in mass marine life and bird die-offs.

Recent major flooding has led scientists to predict the more frequent occurrence of ocean dead zones—areas of water not able to sustain life due to low concentrations of oxygen. Flooding causes the agricultural industry’s runoff (including nutrients and chemicals) to go straight into nearby rivers, with many of these rivers emptying into oceans, creating these dead zones.

Additionally, there are an estimated 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in the ocean, polluting countless habitats and putting many species in danger.

Given our oceans comprise more than 70% of Earth’s surface, this can all lead to catastrophic economic implications for coastal communities dependent on ocean life and even more dire global consequences.

Project Peril in North America Map

Our Work with Sea Lions


In recent years, more and more sea lions have been found entangled in nets and other fishing debris. These discarded nets hurt not only sea lions but also much of the northern Gulf’s marine ecosystem. This can be attributed to a lack of solid-waste management and comprehensive regulations in the fishing industry. The sea lion’s future food sources are also threatened by the warming of the oceans.

Thanks to your support, our Project Peril team attended a workshop hosted by Centro Intercultural de Estudios de Desiertos y Océanos (Intercultural Center for Desert & Ocean Studies) in Puerto Peñasco, Sonora where participants were trained on how to safely remove entangled debris from sea lions. Participants included nonprofits from coaster cities, veternarians, multiple Mexican state-level federal agencies, the Federal Office for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA), and the Secretariat of the Mexican Navy (SEMAR).

Five sea lions were rescued during the workshop; however, there is still more work to be done. It is estimated that in the Gulf of California alone, one would find 50 sea lions entangled in ghost nets and old fishing debris daily.

Endangered Species in This Area


Vaquitas

This Gulf of California harbor porpoise, Phocoena sinus, meaning “little sea cow” in Spanish, is only found in the murky waters of the northern Gulf of California, where it is swimming on the edge of extinction with only 30-odd individuals left.

Sea Turtles

Over the past 50 years of commercial exploitation, poaching, and degradation of nesting and foraging habitats, most species of marine turtle, including the Hawsbill, Green Golfina, Leatherback Laud, and green sea turtle, have been placed on the endangered species list.

Sharks

An estimated 25% of all sharks and rays are threatened with extinction, and millions are killed annually. 181 sharks and rays are threatened with extinction on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, including the great white, the hammerhead, the oceanic white tip and the whale shark.

Become a Protector

Join our community of sustaining members and your recurring gift will protect endangered species and their habitat, month after month.

Replant Coral with FORCE BLUE

We're teaming up with our friends at FORCE BLUE to replant 100 yards of damaged and dying coral along Florida's Rainbow Reef.

Save the Ocean

With your support, we work to support trash cleanups, support conservation, and put a stop to illegal fishing practices.