Waves black and white

Support the Manifesto for our Seas

Thousands of you joined us in urging politicians to Restore Our Seas.

Showing your support

We released an open letter to political party leaders urging them to prioritise the recovery and enhancement of our ocean during 2024's election period.

The letter was written by our CEO Sandy Luk and says that the ocean is our “heart and lungs”. In it, we call for immediate investment in the ocean alongside action to combat pollution, and urge political leaders to help save one of the world’s most precious resources by publicly backing our Manifesto for our Seas.

Our open letter to UK leaders

Dear Party Leaders,

I am writing to you on behalf of the staff and supporters of the Marine Conservation Society, the UK’s leading marine conservation charity – to urge you prioritise the recovery and enhancement of our ocean and marine life during this election period. It is a crucial issue that cannot be ignored – our very survival depends on it.

During the party conferences, none of you specifically mentioned ocean conservation.

Yet the ocean is the world’s heart and lungs – it is a life-giving asset that absorbs about a quarter of carbon dioxide emitted by humanity. It is one of the most important factors in the fight against climate change, with vital habitats like our seagrass meadows and kelp forests capturing more carbon than a tropical rainforest. That’s why, ahead of the next General Election, we are highlighting crucial ocean conservation policies.

Our ocean’s health is under increasing threat from pollution, overfishing and habitat destruction, which together threaten its ability to mitigate climate change, endanger marine life and jeopardise sustainable livelihoods. We depend on our seas for food, income and cultural heritage. The UK economy is also dependent on a clean and healthy ocean, with pollution restricting the size and strength of our national finances.

Without action, we will face catastrophic consequences if the ocean’s demise continues. But it doesn't have to be that way.

The Marine Conservation Society’s Manifesto for our Seas details a set of comprehensive and evidence-based policies aimed at addressing challenges and ensuring the long-term health and resilience of our marine ecosystems.

We urgently want to see these measures reflected in your plans for government so that our ocean can in future be healthier and cleaner.

marek-okon-tWWCqIMiUmg-unsplash (1).jpg

Credit: Marek Okon/Unsplash

Invest in our Ocean's future

Our seas offer huge economic potential, for example through offshore wind, tourism and recreation, and fisheries. But healthy seas must be the foundation of a sustainable blue economy. We believe that growing our sustainable blue economy will deliver economic resilience, adaptability and opportunity in uncertain times. In doing so, it will achieve social, economic, environmental and political targets.

We are asking you to deliver a sustainable blue economy through dramatically scaling up public investment and setting regulatory frameworks to stimulate private investment.

Scotland CSO, Catherine Gemmell

Credit: Catherine Gemmell

Turn the tide on pollution

Pollution from plastic, untreated sewage and harmful chemicals unquestionably comprises three of the biggest threats to our ocean and marine life. The Marine Conservation Society and our supporters urgently want to see an end to untreated sewage entering the environment, better enforcement of regulatory frameworks against damage caused by forever chemicals and the speedy introduction of a comprehensive Deposit Return Scheme that includes glass as we move us toward a circular economy. Drinks-related litter is found on more than 90% of the UK’s beaches - an entirely avoidable problem.

Dive Project Cornwall beach clean survey form Porthkerris Cornwall Billy Barraclough

Credit: Billy Barraclough

Take immediate steps to address the challenges

Recent surveys show that the overwhelming majority of people are in favour of policies to tackle climate change. By prioritising our Manifesto for our Seas, you will be helping to safeguard our marine environment and demonstrate your commitment to addressing one of society’s most pressing issues.

Thank you for your attention to this important issue. We look forward to working with you to advance policies that protect and preserve our seas for future generations.


Sandy Luk

CEO of the Marine Conservation Society

Make your impact go further

We're working for a cleaner, better protected and healthier ocean for everyone to enjoy, and so, we call on all Parties to act to address the crisis facing our ocean in their marine conservation policies. By becoming a member today, your generosity can fund the vital work to restore and preserve the ocean for generations to come.

Will you take the next step to protect our seas? Discover our membership success stories now.