Monterey foundation set to save oceans

January 9, 2008 7:37:29 PM PST
The David and Lucile Packard foundation has donated $25 million dollars to create a center in Monterey, dedicated to protecting the world's oceans. It's a collaboration focused on understanding the threats to our oceans and coming up with solutions.

The ocean covers 70 percent of the earth's surface and scientists say man's action's are threatening those waters: everything from over-fishing to global warming.

"We're overexploiting the oceans, we're taking too much out. Were putting too much, in terms of pollution, plastics, chemicals and so forth, so we have lot of problems in the ocean," says Michael Sutton, Vice President, Monterey Bay Aquarium.

It's a new collaboration, designed to address the health of our marine environment. It's called the Center for Ocean Solutions.

It has three world class powers joining forces; The Monterey Bay Aquarium, Stanford University and it's Hopkins Marine Station in Pacific Grove.

"We want to bring together all of the stakeholders to really look at innovative solutions," says Marcia McNutt, Monterey Aquarium Research Institute.

The Center for Ocean Solutions hopes to alter human behavior and bring about positive policy changes.

One example is California's implementation of marine protected areas-places, now off limits to fishing and oil development.

The center hopes to capitalize on a local network of experts to have a global and long term impact.

"We have more horsepower around the bay in ocean policy and science than anywhere else in the world and the center is an effort to harness that for the good of all of us," says Sutton.