Monday, 28 February 2011

Beyond the Horizon: Creating a Network of Special Ocean Places

Beyond the Horizon is a discussion of a potential network of special ocean places to help strengthen the ecology, economy and culture of the Gulf of Mexico. The discussion includes a conference May 11-13, 2011, at Mote Marine Laboratory. Please visit http://www.mote.org/beyondhorizon for more information.

· 14 million people call the Gulf Coast home
· The region provides jobs for 20 million people
· Oil and gas, tourism, fishing and shipping in the Gulf of Mexico generate $234 billion annually
· The region’s petroleum industry provides half of all the U.S. oil production and refining capabilities, employs 100,000 people and pays $12 billion in wages
· Tourism generates 620,000 jobs and $9 billion in wages
· The commercial fishing industry lands 1.3 billion pounds of seafood worth $662 million
· 66 percent of the ocean-transported cargo shipped to and from the U.S. comes through the Gulf’s six major ports
· The Gulf of Mexico provides habitat for 15,400 documented species — including 1,500 species that live only in the Gulf

The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon was more than an oil spill. It was a national tragedy that showed how lives, communities and ecosystems can be harmed if we fail to responsibly use and adequately protect our ocean’s resources. The environmental disaster and social disruptions that followed demonstrate that the Gulf’s ecological and human environments are interwoven.

Beyond the Horizon’s goal is to build consensus for establishing ecologically significant protections for key Gulf of Mexico sites to ensure that they continue to provide important services to our society and to identify the mechanisms that allow comprehensive approaches to management and significant involvement of the public in decision making. Please visit http://www.mote.org/beyondhorizon for more information.

Jay Elliott Berman
Government Relations Manager
National Marine Sanctuary Foundation
8601 Georgia Avenue
Suite 501

Silver Spring, MD 20910
Office: 301.608.3040 x4
Mobile: 202.870.0387
Fax: 301.608.3044

http://www.nmsfocean.org
Twitter: @NMSFocean
Facebook: /NMSFocean