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Help conserve and preserve the oceans

There are dozens and dozens of non-profit marine-centric organizations, from global icons like Greenpeace to small regional groups like Save the Peconic Bays.

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Each has its own focus, from water quality to marine mammal protection. The all share the same mission of conservation and preservation for future generations.

A quick online search yields a treasure-trove of advocacy groups dedicated to a location or cause they share a passion for. The following list is by no means comprehensive, so to get involved, try researching groups that share your passion.

Ocean Conservancy

Founded in 1972, Ocean Conservancy has a singular mission to globally fight for healthy oceans, from a commercial whaling moratorium to marine sanctuary designations to advocating for accountability for the BP Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster in 2010. (800) 519-1541;


Founded in 2001, Ocean is the largest international organization focused solely on ocean conservation through advocacy for sustainable fishing and petitioning retailers to stop selling unsustainable marine animal products.

Nature Conservancy

Founded in 1951, the Conservancy is the world's leading conservation organization, dedicated to conserving the lands and waters around the world in more than 35 countries and all 50 states. (703) 841-5300;

Sierra Club

Founded by legendary conservationist John Muir in 1892, the Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental group in America with 750,000 members and 64 local chapters. A subsidiary, the National Marine Wildlife and Habitat Committee, focuses on protecting the world’s oceans.

Save The Bay: Narragansett Bay

Dedicated to protecting and improving Rhode Island’s Narragansett Bay through advocacy and education. (401) 272-3540;

Save The Bay: San Francisco

Founded in 1961, Save The Bay is the largest regional organization working to protect, restore and celebrate San Francisco Bay through advocacy, hands-on work and education. (510) 463-6850;

Save the Peconic Bays

Dedicated to the revitalization of New York’s Great South Bay, a 45 mile long body of water between Long Island’s South Shore and Fire Island. (516) 765-1766;

Sailors for the Sea

Founded in 2004 by sailors David Rockefeller, Jr. and David Treadway, this conservation organization recruits individual boaters to measure the quality of the oceans they sail. (401) 846-8900;

Chesapeake Bay Foundation

The largest conservation organization dedicated solely to saving the Chesapeake Bay watershed, through education, advocacy, litigation, and restoration.

MD, and has state offices in Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania. CBF also operates 15 environmental education programs. (888) 728-3229;

Alliance for the Great Lakes

Founded in 1970, The Alliance is the oldest Great Lakes organization devoted 100 percent to the five lakes through policy advocacy, education and on-the-ground efforts. (312) 939-0838;

Blue Ocean Institute

The Blue Ocean Institute works to preserve the world’s oceans through science, art and literature to foster a deeper connection with nature. (631) 632-3763;

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society

The Australian-based Sea Shepherd embraces controversy through confrontation to protect oceans and marine life. Their high-profile battles with Japan’s commercial whalers led to the group’s Animal Planet reality TV series “Whale Wars.” (360) 370-5650;


Another controversial group nown for a wide range of environmental activism, Greenpeace has its own Oceans Campaign advocating for sustainable seafood, ending commercial whaling and protecting marine reserves. (800) 722-6995;

Blue Frontier Campaign

The grassroots group Blue Frontier Campaign is made up almost entirely of individual citizen activists that advocates both on a national and local level. (202) 387-8030;

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

This non-profit research and education facility trains and employs some of the world’s top marine researchers and scientists dedicated to marine science. (508) 289-2252;

Scripps Institute of Oceanography

UC San Diego’s Scripps Institute of Oceanography is one of the oldest, largest and most influential centers for oceanic research, education and public services in the world. (858) 534-3624;

Deep Sea Conservation Coalition

The Deep Sea Conservation Coalition is an alliance of more than 70 smaller international organizations bandes together to influence legislation that can protect and preserve the oceans on a global scale. 31 646 168 899 (Netherlands);

Environmental Defense Fund

Founded in 1967, the EDF drew notoriety for suing the U.S. government to ban DDT. Its 400,000 members lead multiple environmental campaigns, including Oceans Alive, an effort to maintain the health of the oceans and fight overfishing. (800) 684-3322;

Wildlife Conservation Society

This global organization has a Marine Conservation Program that spans 20 countries to deliver scientific information related to the maintenance, conservation, and recovery of marine wildlife populations. (718) 220-5100;

Humane Society

The largest animal protection organization in America with a presence in every state, the Humane Society advocates for the protection of marine mammals from commercial fishing, boat collisions, entanglements in fishing gear and sonar. (202) 452-1100;

World Wildlife Federation

The World Wildlife Federation offers a global program for saving the ocean and its inhabitants, working with media and lawmakers in countries around the globe. (202) 293-4800;

Ocean Futures Society

Founded by Jean-Michel Cousteau, Ocean Futures Society focuses on the exploration of the ocean and distributing its findings through videos and books. (805) 899-8899;

Global Coral Reef Alliance

Founded in 1990, this non-profit group is dedicated to growing, protecting and managing the most threatened of all marine ecosystems — coral reefs.

Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society

Whale and Dolphin Conservation (formerly WDCS) is the leading global charity dedicated to the conservation and protection of whales and dolphins through campaigns, lobbying, advising governments, conservation projects, field research and rescue. (888) 699-4253;

The Whaleman Foundation

The Whaleman Foundation, founded in 2008, is a non-profit, marine conservation organization based in Hawaii that advocates for the protection of cetaceans (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) and their habitats.