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Friends of the North Atlantic Right Whale Marine Sanctuary is a campaign of the Ocean River Institute that aims to bring a spotlight to one of the most critically endangered ocean creatures in the United States: the right whale.

Building on the amazing accomplishments of the adjacent Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary, our aim is to unite community groups, stakeholders, and organizations to call for a North Atlantic Right Whale National Marine Sanctuary that might stretch as large as 7,000 square miles, including Cape Cod Bay, around the outer Cape across Nantucket Shoals to Block Island, Rhode Island.

This sanctuary would protect right whales and their critical marine habitat through education, research, and resource protection efforts informed by an active advisory council. The sanctuary would work with community and interest groups, including conservationists, scientists, fishers, windmill and boat operators, government agencies, and others. The Advisory Council would also include Narragansett and Wampanoag Aquinnah representatives from local indigenous groups as well.

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Save the Right Whales

The North Atlantic right whale is a critically endangered whale. In the 1970s, with the first whale watches, there were estimated to be 350 right whales, and the population was growing. Then, in 2017, right whales took a turn for the worse. By 2020, the population had fallen to 338 right whales, with only 50-70 breeding females. We must now do more to protect and restore right whales.


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