Seal eating fish

Marine Mammal Protection Act

Key Issue

Marine Mammal Protection Act

In line with our mission, the National Aquarium is committed to:

  • Advocating for the protection of marine mammal species. Marine mammals, including whales, dolphins, seals, manatees and other species, play a critical role in maintaining a healthy ocean.
  • Informing and educating our guests, members and local community about the importance of funding and research that supports our Earth's critical resources.

We care about this issue because:

  • Until the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) was enacted in 1972, marine mammals and the coastal ecosystems they depend on were at risk.
  • The Marine Mammal Commission uses science-based oversight to balance the demands of human activities such as fishing and offshore drilling with the protection of marine mammals and their environments.
  • The MMPA is one of many critical pieces of legislation that has advanced our country's principles of environmental stewardship, and these protections are working! The United States is globally recognized for maintaining populations of critically endangered marine mammal species, including blue whales and manatees.

We help by:

  • Participating in a network of stranding organizations, always at the ready to respond, rehabilitate and release any sick or injured marine mammals found along the East Coast.
  • Urging our state and federal representatives to safeguard and prioritize public investment in responsible environmental policies like the MMPA.

The public comment period is now closed. Thank you to all who pledged their support.

Updated: September 2018