Polar bear (Ursus maritimus)

About marine and polar conservation

Oceans cover 70% of the Earth’s surface and support an extraordinarily diverse world. Only a fraction of it has been discovered so far and much of ocean life remains a mystery which IUCN experts are striving to unveil.

It is estimated that more than 1 million species live on coral reefs alone, and as many as 10 million in the deep seas.

The threats facing the marine environment are numerous and complex yet less than 2% of the oceans are protected.

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What's new?

Western Gray Whale and ship.

IUCN seeks whale conservation experts to advise on energy development impacts

IUCN seeks applications from qualified individuals to serve on its independent scientific and technical advisory panel to minimize impacts on western gray whales during offshore oil and gas development and beyond in Sakhalin, in the Russian Far East. The application deadline is 20 August 2015. …  

29 Jun 2015 | News story

East Rennell, Solomon Islands

Climate change and dams threaten natural World Heritage, warns IUCN

Climate change and large dam projects are putting natural World Heritage sites at risk, says IUCN, International Union for Conservation of Nature, the official advisory body on nature to UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee, meeting this Sunday in Bonn, Germany. …   | French | Spanish | Dutch

25 Jun 2015 | International news release

Lion (Panthera leo)

Conservation successes overshadowed by more species declines – IUCN Red List update

Successful conservation action has boosted the populations of the Iberian Lynx and the Guadalupe Fur Seal, while the African Golden Cat, the New Zealand Sea Lion and the Lion are facing increasing threats to their survival, according to the latest update of The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™. Ninety-nine percent of tropical Asian slipper orchids – some of the most highly prized ornamental plants – are threatened with extinction. …   | French | Spanish | German | Dutch

23 Jun 2015 | International news release