Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument

Our team was part of the core team that successfully advocated for the creation of the first marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean. This monument is a unique and dramatic ocean area about 130 miles off the coast of New England encompassing four extinct undersea volcanoes (“seamounts”), three undersea canyons (each deeper than the Grand Canyon), and the ecosystems in and around them. President Obama designated the monument in 2016. It is the first marine monument established in the U.S. Atlantic Ocean. The protected area offers food, shelter, and nursery habitat to a spectacular array of marine life, including endangered whales, sea turtles, puffins, and rare deep-sea cold-water corals. The national monument designation shields the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts from commercial extractive activities, including commercial fishing and oil and gas drilling.  

The 5000 square mile reserve established under the antiquities act on Sept 21, 2016 by President Barack Obama. Since, we have played a key role in defending the monument both publicly and in federal court.  Zack became a party to the suit with Roger serving as his attorney.  With three partner conservation organizations, our team successfully defended the monument from a suit brought by commercial fishing interests in the Washington, D.C. Federal District Court and the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.  We are now back in court challenging the June 5, 2020 proclamation by the Trump administration purporting to open the monument to commercial fishing. To learn more about the monument click here (