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Ocean and Water


glyphLike so many of this planet's resources, oceans and waterways have been used and treated with disregard by humans. While the ocean makes up roughly 72% of the world’s surface, only around 5% has been explored – yet humans have collectively managed to pollute, overfish and threaten all the species that call the waters “home.” The water we drink comes from a variety of sources, all of which are also susceptible to the aforementioned threats. Despite the protections of the 1972 Clean Water Act (formerly known as the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948) citizens and non-governmental organizations must remain ever vigilant. The watchdog work of Earth Island projects utilizes a holistic approach to ensure the existing legal frameworks are upheld while identifying new and expanded protections. As we know, Water is Life.

photo of two eagles interacting at the seashore

North of Juneau, Alaska runs the Chilkat River, home to Bald Eagles, thousands of Salmon, and gold, copper, zinc and silver deposits. When the Alaska Clean Water Advocacy (ACWA) project learned about a new mining threat to the Chilkat river, they sprang into action, assembling a team of local groups and utilizing the framework set up by the Clean Water Act. With their partners from the Chilkat Indian Tribal Council, ACWA nominated the Chilkat River for designation as an Outstanding National Water Resource. This designation would protect the river from new and expanded releases of pollution that would threaten access to clean water for communities. Under this protection, metal mining would become more difficult, expensive – but, happily, the species dependent upon this region, such as salmon and bears, would have a better chance of survival.

ACWA remains committed to this fight, just as it has for the last 24 years, encouraged by past victories including a ten-year struggle to champion Alaska’s passage of the world’s tightest restriction on giant cruise-ship discharges.

Alaska Clean Water Advocacy
ACWA, a project of the Earth Island Institute (formerly the Campaign to Safeguard America's Waters (CSAW)), works to prevent the degradation of public waters through advocacy, education, litigation, legislation and market campaigns in support of the fundamental goals of the federal Clean…
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All One Ocean
All One Ocean’s mission is to educate our communities about the dangers of marine debris. We believe the solution to ocean pollution starts with education, and we provide crucial education through our two primary programs: Ocean Warriors, our elementary school environmental leadership…
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Center for Ecosystem Restoration
CER is focused on promoting environmental restoration and completing restoration projects. We believe that restoration offers a practicable form of sustainable development which can improve the human and natural environment while reconnecting communities to land and water.
International Marine Mammal Project (IMMP)
IMMP is leading the global effort to stop the slaughter of dolphins, to end commercial whaling, to end the use of drift nets and other destructive fishing practices, end commercial exploitation of cetaceans by aquariums and sea parks, and to protect key…
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Shark Stewards
Saving Sharks, imperiled marine life and restoring health to the oceans.
South Coast Habitat Restoration
SCHR works with private landowners and agencies to manage habitat restoration projects and increase community support. Projects include non-native invasive removal, steelhead trout restoration and community based watershed groups.
Wholly H2o
Wholly H2o’s mission is to equip Californians in the residential, commercial, institutional, industrial and agricultural sectors with the information and skills necessary to normalize water conservation and efficiency, as well as rainwater, graywater, stormwater and black water reuse/recycling. This effort includes participation…
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The Wild Oyster Project
The Wild Oyster Project's aim is to bring native oysters back to San Francisco Bay through restoration, community engagement, and thoughtful urban planning. Our vision is a swimmable, edible Bay!
Project Focus
glyphAgriculture & Food Systems glyphClean Energy & Climate Change glyphConservation, Preservation & Restoration glyphEnvironmental Education
glyphInternational & Indigenous Communities glyphLeadership Development glyphOcean & Water glyphPollution & Toxics
glyphSustainability & Community Resilience glyphWildlife Protection glyphWomen’s Environmental Leadership glyphYouth Empowerment