Skip to main content
Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary National Marine Sanctuaries Home Page National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Home Page

Superintendent Statement: Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary celebrates 25 years of ocean protection

Superintendent Statement
September 18th, 2017


Paul Michel, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Superintendent (831) 647-4258,

Today we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the designation of Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, one of the planet's most vital and iconic coastal marine ecosystems.

This "Serengeti of the Sea" stretches along the central coast from San Francisco to Cambria and protects 6,094 square miles of ocean. The sanctuary includes pristine beaches, jewel-like tide pools, lush kelp forests, steep canyons and an offshore seamount teeming with life – from tiny shrimp to giant blue whales.

The sanctuary was designated by NOAA in September 1992 for its biological richness, unique habitats, sensitive and endangered animals, and the presence of special cultural relics. We work with a variety of partners and stakeholders to promote responsible, sustainable ocean uses that support local communities and drive coastal economies through marine-related job creation and tourism.

Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary offers exceptional wildlife viewing with an array of marine mammals, fish, seabirds and shorebirds. The sanctuary hosts some of the best ocean recreational activities in the world including kayaking, sailing, whale watching, diving, surfing and fishing.

The sanctuary supports commercial and recreational fishing, including abalone, salmon, squid and sardine fisheries. Squid, crab, bottom fish and schooling fish like anchovies and sardines are fished in sanctuary waters.

We partner with more than 30 research institutions to deepen our understanding of the sanctuary and inform our management decisions. Research tracks and predicts conditions and trends of natural and cultural resources in the sanctuary.

We celebrate 25 years of being part of the community, and recognize the invaluable contributions of advisory council members, partners, volunteers, visitor center guests and sanctuary supporters.

Looking ahead, we recognize the various challenges and impacts facing our coasts and wildlife, including climate change, ocean acidification, cumulative pollutants, increased population and fiscal restraints. However, designation of this sanctuary 25 years ago was not the end game – it was the beginning of a protection effort that never ends.

On its 25th anniversary, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary is poised for even greater success, protection and stewardship of this national treasure.

URL:    Reviewed: November 20, 2017
Web Site Owner: National Ocean Service

Take Our Survey | Privacy Statement | Site Disclaimer
National Marine Sanctuaries | National Ocean Service | National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration |