World Oceans Day 2020

World Oceans Day is a day marked for uniting global action to protect our blue planet. This year, ocean allies and advocates are calling for 30×30 – a push for world leaders to protect 30% of our oceans by 2030 through highly protected areas called Marine Protected Areas or MPAs.

This is a noble goal. MPAs are an effective management tool for conserving the world’s oceans.

But not all MPAs are created equal. We need to ensure that we are protecting the right 30% of the ocean, and that means prioritizing coastal ocean waters at the intersection of high human activity and high biodiversity.

Consider these numbers:

  • Coastal seas make up just 7% of the ocean but are home to 90% of all marine life.
  • 90% of the wild fish we eat comes from coastal seas.
  • Nearly 2.4 billion people – about 40% of the world’s population – live within 100 km of the coast.


Safeguarding the right 30% of the ocean means finding a balance between productivity and protection of coastal waters. That’s what Rare’s Fish Forever program is all about. Through Fish Forever, we pair no-take reserves – a type of MPA where fishing is off-limits – with adjacent areas of “managed access” where local fishers have exclusive rights.

And it’s working. Our program review found that at 98% of our sites, fish populations were either holding steady or increasing. Now, Fish Forever is up and running in nearly 1,000 communities across eight countries, with momentum and support from regional and national governments growing.

Visit our Fish Forever program page to learn more about our community-led solution to revitalize coastal marine habitats, protect biodiversity, and secure the livelihoods of fisher households and their communities.


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