We need GLORES to safeguard marine biodiversity.

How GLORES Works

Marine Conservation Institute launched the Global Ocean Refuge System (GLORES) to protect 30% of the ocean by 2030. GLORES is an innovative strategy to incentivize decision makers to establish protected areas that safeguard marine life and promote opportunities for sustainable tourism. We invite you to join us on our journey to secure lasting conservation for our oceans. 

The Challenge

Healthy oceans are essential to human survival and prosperity. Unfortunately, oceans are in deep trouble worldwide due to overfishing, climate change, industrialization, pollution and habitat destruction. These problems are rapidly getting worse, and our oceans are in a state of crisis.

A Global Network of Effective Marine Protected Areas

The Global Ocean Refuge System (GLORES) aims to safeguard marine biodiversity by assembling a strategic network of effective marine protected areas (MPAs) that includes replicate representation of all marine habitats in each biogeographic region and supports marine population persistence.

GLORES incentivizes the implementation of more effective MPAs by awarding those that meet science-based standards for effectiveness.

GLORES supports MPA efforts around the world, complementing the advocacy of conservation groups working to implement MPAs and international agreements for MPA coverage targets.

Becoming a Global Ocean Refuge is a 4-step process.

Designed to greatly expand the number and efficacy of marine protected areas, the Global Ocean Refuge System complements on-the-ground conservation efforts. The core elements of GLORES are:

First, the science-based standards for Global Ocean Refuges are the product of a partnership among marine biologists and conservationists from across the globe and across sectors. GLORES provides a scientifically credible designation for marine protected areas that integrates marine ecology principles such as biogeography, ecological spatial connectivity and resilience.

Second, GLORES provides a comprehensive, global conservation framework. Many organizations and agencies are creating marine protected areas one at a time, focusing on the objectives of an individual site, but not necessarily on recovering populations or maintaining the oceans’ resilience to future threats. GLORES advances and connects these efforts by providing a roadmap for integrating existing efforts and conserving ecologically important areas and representative habitats within one system.

Third, working with partners, such as the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, GLORES integrates management and monitoring effectiveness into its standards.

Lastly, and very significantly, GLORES provides a substantial incentive for marine protection by publicly recognizing the outstanding conservation work of communities and managers to establish Global Ocean Refuges. The award, which confers prestige, funding leverage and ecotourism opportunities, aligns governments interests with biodiversity conservation. GLORES also provides a benchmark that both private and governmental funders can use for their investments.