The diversity of our ocean and coasts is as great as its people. They provide places to live, work, and play offsite link, drive our nation’s economy, and support a wealth of biodiversity. They are an integral part of our national heritage and character.
In 1972, in response to growing public concern about the state of our environment, Congress enacted banner legislation designed to protect our nation’s ocean and coasts. The legislation shaped our past 50 years and will continue to shape the future. But that’s not enough - your help is also needed.
Help us raise awareness about all our ocean and coasts do for us and practice the 50 ways (and more!) you can love your ocean and coast.
50 years of ocean and coast legislation
50 years ago, Congress passed banner legislation designed to protect our nation's ocean and coasts. The legislation shaped our past 50 years and will continue to shape the future.
The Coastal Zone Management Act is administered by NOAA’s Office for Coastal Management, and implemented through the following programs.
- National Coastal Zone Management Program
- National Estuarine Research Reserve System
- Coral Reef Conservation Program
- Digital Coast
The Office of National Marine Sanctuaries conducts management, research, and education programs in areas designated as national marine sanctuaries, which include fifteen sites all over the country, and nationally as a system. This office also has co-management responsibilities for Papahānaumokuākea and Rose Atoll marine national monuments under the Antiquities Act.
This page is sponsored by NOAA, the Marine Mammal Commission, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.