- Fisheries Home
- About Us
- Science Centers
- Fisheries Resources
- Educators and Students
- News & Multimedia
- Get Involved
Sign up forFishNews
and other email updates
- OPR Home
- Health & Stranding
- Laws & Policies
- Conservation & Recovery
- About OPR
Laws and Policies
The Office of Protected Resources follows several mandates for the protection of endangered and threatened marine life, marine mammals, and the ecosystems upon which they depend.
Endangered Species Act (ESA)
The Endangered Species Act was established in 1973 to conserve the Nation's natural heritage for the enjoyment and benefit of current and future generations by conserving species that are in danger of extinction.
Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA)
The Marine Mammal Protection Act was established in 1972 to protect marine mammals by prohibiting take of marine mammals in U.S. waters and by U.S. citizens on the high seas, and the importation of marine mammals and marine mammal products into the U.S.
- Species protected under the MMPA
- MMPA fact sheet [pdf]
- Policies, Guidance, and Regulations under the MMPA
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
The National Environmental Policy Act was enacted in 1969. NEPA requires Federal agencies to integrate environmental values into their decision-making processes by considering the environmental impacts of their major proposed actions.
- Additional treaties, laws, and policies under which the Office of Protected Resources operates.
- Office of Law Enforcement: NOAA Fisheries
- Other Environmental Laws
- Regulations.gov - Review and comment on pending Federal regulations
Updated: April 24, 2014