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?

Adoption of the Message from Guadeloupe

Message from Guadeloupe: a roadmap for actions to 2020

 The international conference on biodiversity and climate change took place 21 to 25 October 2014 on Guadeloupe Island. The conference was co-organized by the Secretariat of the CBD, the European Commission (EC), the French Government, Guadeloupe Regional Council, the government of the British Virgin Islands (BVI), and the Association of Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTA) and IUCN.  

21 Nov 2014 | News story

Ravilevu Nature Reserve, Taveuni, Fiji

IUCN summit delivers major commitments to save Earth’s most precious natural areas

Sydney, Australia – The IUCN World Parks Congress 2014, the once-in-a-decade global forum on protected areas, closes today with the release of The Promise of Sydney. The Promise sets out an ambitious agenda to safeguard the planet’s natural assets, ranging from halting rainforest loss in the Asia-Pacific and tripling ocean protection off Africa’s coasts to a business commitment to plant 1.3 billion trees along the historic Silk Road.  | French | Spanish | Dutch

19 Nov 2014 | International news release

Coral reef survey

'Game-changing visual record' of Great Barrier Reef published

IUCN World Parks Congress, Sydney, November 14 2014 - The Catlin Seaview Survey, in which IUCN is a partner, announced today that a complete visual and data record from its expeditions along the Great Barrier Reef is now available to anyone to use through the Catlin Global Reef Record. …  

14 Nov 2014 | News story