The Big Idea

The Centennial of the National Park Service in 2016 provides an historic opportunity to launch a decadal effort to bring America’s “best idea” to where it is most urgently needed now — our ocean.

“No water, no life. No blue, no green.”

Blue Centennial

Bringing America's "best idea" to our oceans

The Big Idea
Our Mission to Secure the Future

10 Years to Impact the Next 10,000

Call to Action
YouthLed

"Protect the Oceans as if your life depends on it. It does."

Young Explorers

National Parks were America's best idea.

Let's bring them underwater.

The Centennial of the National Park Service in 2016 provides an historic opportunity to launch a decadal effort to bring America’s “best idea” to where it is most urgently needed now — our ocean. Our vision is to restore, protect, and maintain a network of blue parks to preserve America’s ocean wonders in early part of the 21st century, just as the National Park Service did for our most magnificent landscapes in the early part of the 20th century.

Read the Op-Ed

Like Parks

To restore, protect, and maintain a network of blue parks.
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By Exploration

To identifying gaps in protection of key biodiversity areas.
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With Science

To expand the national system of marine protected areas.
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To Preserve

To protect our oceans in the U.S. To inspire around the world.
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The Blue Centennial Initiative

Success for the Blue Centennial Initiative will be the achievement of fully protected status for significant ocean areas throughout the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone.

EXPLORATION

On film and in photography, to educate and engage on the importance and wonder of our oceans.
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EXPEDITIONS

To build the scientific record of key biodiversity areas in need of protection. Read More

ENGAGEMENT

To capture the hearts and minds by communicating the importance of these marine areas.
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WHY IT MATTERS

What we do in the next 10 years will impact what happens in the next 10,000 years. Read More

YOUTH-LED

The Blue Centennial expedition team conducts scientific expeditions with young explorers.
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YOUNG EXPLORERS

Led by National Geographic scientists, cartographers, explorers, and photographers. Read More

CONSERVATION MINDED

Targeting Marine Protected Areas and Key Biodiversity Areas as prioritized by the IUCN World Conservation Congress.
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EXPERT DRIVEN

National Geographic scientists and cartographers to build the public record, catalogue, and marshal evidence of why it matters. Read More

EXPEDITIONS

To build the scientific record of key biodiversity areas in need of protection.
Read More

EXPLORATION

On film and in photography, to educate and engage on the importance and wonder of our oceans. Read More

WHY IT MATTERS

What we do in the next 10 years will impact what happens in the next 10,000 years.
Read More

ENGAGEMENT

To capture the hearts and minds by communicating the importance of these marine areas. Read More

YOUNG EXPLORERS

Led by National Geographic scientists, cartographers, explorers, and photographers.
Read More

YOUTH-LED

The Blue Centennial expedition team conducts scientific expeditions with young explorers. Read More

EXPERT DRIVEN

National Geographic scientists and cartographers to build the public record, catalogue, and marshal evidence of why it matters.
Read More

CONSERVATION MINDED

Targeting Marine Protected Areas and Key Biodiversity Areas as prioritized by the IUCN World Conservation Congress. Read More
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“...We have salt in our blood, in our sweat, in our tears. We are tied to the ocean. And when we go back to the sea, we are going back from whence we came.”
– John F. Kennedy 1962

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"What we do in the next 10 years will impact what we do in the next 10,000 years. We are at a pivotal moment in history. Now is the time we must act.”
- Dr. Sylvia Earle
“No water, no life. No blue, no green.”