Ocean commotion
Monthly update from the world's largest community of environmental experts.
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Challenging times

The Gulf of Mexico oil spill and the radiation leak at the Fukushima nuclear plant are stark reminders of the serious threats facing the marine world.  Climate change tops the list of threats. As oceans absorb man-made carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, they become more acidic, harming marine ecosystems and species. But the oceans can also help fight climate change.

> Read more
> View IUCN Director General's interview about oceans and energy
Offshore wind farm.

100% renewable energy - at what cost to the marine environment?

Launch of E.ON's Pelamis P2 wave energy converter - Leith, Edinburgh

The marine environment offers a bounty of renewable energy options but what do the scenarios look like in reality? Learn more from Nadine McCormick, IUCN's Energy Network Coordinator.

> Read full story

Blue Gold : oceans services

Whitetip Reef Shark over Palau coral reef

The oceans already provide goods and services worth billions. But if we need any more reason to protect them, just imagine the vast untapped potential they offer for scientific innovation, not least in the areas of renewable energy and medical research.

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Forgotten seascapes and marine tragedies

Ameer Abdulla with a Hawksbill Turtle working on a marine survey examining the damage caused by tsunami in the Indian Ocean

Dr. Ameer Abdulla works on preserving the beauty of our oceans. "Countries that are most difficult to work in are most in need of marine conservation science. Time is quickly running out for them."

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Managing the impacts of offshore energy in Europe

Drilling for natural gas in the North Sea off the coast of the Netherlands

The offshore wind power industry is developing rapidly in European waters and is seeking greater access to marine space to produce low carbon energy. Claude Ganty of IUCN’s Global Marine and Polar Programme, explains the environmental implications.

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Renewable energy in Pacific Islands

Renewable energy in pacific islands

IUCN is implementing energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in Tonga, Palau, Tuvalu, Marshall Islands, Samoa and Vanuatu, making the most of each island's assets: coconut oil, solar energy, water and wind .

> Watch video

On thin ice: Vulnerable Arctic treasures identified


A new report identifies 13 of the richest and most vulnerable places in the Arctic Ocean that should be considered for protection as summer sea ice melts and industrial activity expands into newly accessible areas.

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Challenge your friends!

Whitetip reef shark swimming in the ocean around Rangiroa atoll. French Polynesia, Oceania . How much do you know about our oceans? Take our Facebook quiz and share your score with friends! And if you are not on Facebook, use our website version.
> IUCN Facebook Quiz
> Website version


Underwater wonders

Shoal of fish of the carangidae family off Rangiroa atoll, French Polynesia View a selection of stunning images from our Underwater Photographer of the Year Contest!
> Flickr photo gallery


Facts and figures

Spinner dolphins in the Red Sea marine protected area (Egypt) The oceans produce more than 50% of the oxygen in the atmosphere.
> More facts about oceans.



Check here for selected publications about oceans and energy, or search our catalogue.
> Selected Publications
> Search catalogue


Natural solutions to natural disasters

Disaster caused by the Cahoacán River swelling after the passage of tropical storm Stand in October 2005. IUCN calls on governments to commit to sound environmental management as a preferred and more economic option to deal with disasters.
> Read full story


IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature © 2011

IUCN helps the world find pragmatic solutions to our most pressing environment and development challenges. It supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world and brings governments, non-government organizations, United Nations agencies, companies and local communities together to develop and implement policy, laws and best practice.

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Photo credits: Header banner © Paul Topp/Dreamstime; challenging times © E:ON; Spotlight on © Scottish government and Jerker Tamelander; On the ground © Dr David Obura, Catherine Gras and Canon/Peter Prokosch; Photo galleries © Catherine Gras; Did you know © Ameer Abdulla; Disaster © Bald Frame; quiz © Catherine Gras.