The Important Marine Mammal Areas (IMMA) programme is the first ocean conservation programme to be endorsed by Water Revolution Foundation and was a logical choice. “We considered the transformative capacity of the project on a large scale, its multiplier effect and its large-scale impacts based on scientific indicators. We also looked at the support the project already had from government agencies, international agreements, NGOs, and leading scientists. The IMMA programme ticked all the boxes,” explained Vienna Eleuteri, initiator and vice-chair of Water Revolution Foundation.
The IMMA programme aims to support the restoration of the balance of life in the ocean by identifying the most important marine habitats for marine mammals and prioritising them for conservation actions. With 159 IMMAs already established across the Southern Hemisphere, the IUCN Task Force on Marine Mammal Protected Areas is now looking to the Northern Hemisphere.
We are raising funds for the North Atlantic Ocean to be mapped. This is a popular route for superyachts crossing between the Mediterranean and Caribbean so we, as a community, have a strong connection to this region. The North Atlantic Ocean will cost €550,000 to study in its entirety with the money directly funding the scientists whose work will make the identification of the IMMAs possible. Once identified, these IMMAs will be ripe for species conservation and effective marine management, under the spotlight of an informed public, leading to more sustainable ocean use in this ungoverned area of the high seas.
Our crowdfunding campaign is an opportunity for the superyacht community – companies, professionals, owners and charterers alike – to take on a stewardship role of the oceans. Collectively, we can support the important work of the IMMA programme and help protect our oceans.