Ocean Frontiers – The Dawn of a New Era in Ocean Stewardship

In February, Sustainable Land Development Initiative and Ocean Mountain Ranch – a SLDI carbon-negative project providing a model for sustainable forest and wildlife habitat management, integrated with mixed-use development activities – co-hosted the world premiere of Ocean Frontiers, a feature-length movie which captures the compelling stories of a number of ocean pioneers — people who are embarking on a new course of stewardship, in defense of the seas that sustain them.

Attended by Oregon Governor and First Lady

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber, filmmaker Karen Meyer and First Lady Cylvia Hayes attended the Port Orford film premiere and posed for this photo with Ocean Mountain Ranch in the background.

You can now watch the above 6-minute video with highlights from the entire premiere weekend. Hear remarks from Oregon Governor Kitzhaber and First Lady Hayes about ocean stewardship and the kickoff for Ocean Frontiers: The Dawn of a New Era in Ocean Stewardship by Green Fire Productions. Click on the above image to watch the Port Orford world premiere video.

In the small Oregon fishing community of Port Orford, people are taking control of their destiny by conducting their own brand of conservation. They are using local science to inform their fishing quotas, and saving upstream forests to save their salmon—a farsighted perspective that considers both their links to the land, and the future of their children. Meanwhile, farmers in Iowa are shown starting to implement sustainable agricultural best practices which will improve water quality a thousand miles downstream in the Gulf of Mexico.

Help Make an Impact

Click on the image above to check out the Ocean Frontiers introduction video with excerpts from each of the segments: Massachusetts Bay, Florida Keys, Iowa and the Gulf of Mexico and Port Orford, Oregon.

Additional premiere events are set for Portland, Los Angeles, Boston, Rhode Island, New Jersey and elsewhere across the country. Click here for the most up-to-date schedule. You can share the Ocean Frontiers movie with others who may want to host an event – just complete the “Host a Screening” form. Also, help build support for ocean stewardship by writing your members of Congress and letting them know you support the collaborative, science-based efforts featured in Ocean Frontiers. Write your letter today.

Excerpts from First Lady Hayes’ public comments about ocean stewardship at the film premiere:

I am delighted to be here, to be part of the premiere of Ocean Frontiers and Port Orford’s very special,  featured role in the film.

For someone who loves oceans Oregon is  great place to live and not just because of our magnificent coastline, but because of the tremendous, innovative leadership being provided by coastal communities. It doesn’t surprise me at all, I say with no humbleness whatsoever, that Oregon is one of the states featured in this film because we have an incredible story to tell.

Despite some really, seriously difficult economic conditions here on the coast, we have so many efforts that are putting us on the path to growing and promoting natural resource industries in a way that are both economically and environmentally sustainable and resilient.

Efforts like the techniques to reduce by-catch in commercial fishing, programs that certify sustainable fisheries, and the technological developments that are helping communities like yours make informed decisions about marine habitat and sensitive species population issues.

I appreciate the film for a couple of specific reasons. One, I very much appreciate that it focuses on concrete success stories…what’s actually working. I also appreciate that it features some of the leaders who are bringing about these innovative approaches to coastal and ocean management, and I appreciate the fact that it highlights the National Ocean Policy.

Launched in July of 2010, the National Ocean Policy really is a landmark step toward addressing challenges facing our oceans and coast and the economies that they support. The Ocean Policy aligns with Oregon’s priorities, like clean up of marine debris, eliminating invasive species, preparing coastal communities for the impacts of climate change, and expanding ocean science and education opportunities and the economic development that can come along with those.

The policy also supports, very importantly, state and regional ocean leaderships and we think that this will actually help Oregon take the next step in working with WA and CA regarding shared ocean activities such as shipping, ocean research, marine protected areas and fishing.

Oregon’s bottom-up approach to ocean planning, working with local stakeholders, listening to local communities and allowing them the voice in shaping their future is now recognized nationally and has become a model for other states.

Port Orford epitomizes this approach. It’s evidenced by your stewardship areas and efforts to sustain your fishing heritage, while simultaneous protecting your ecological wealth. Your initiative and leadership is inspirational. The example being set here in Port Orford is exactly the approach we need to take. By nurturing a culture of innovation and creativity, where solutions support quality, family wage jobs, you are propelling us toward a future that is more prosperous and sustainable over time. Specifically, I will be working to educate inland communities about the importance of coastal communities and the excellent job that you’re doing protecting these natural resources.

Finally, on a national level, I will be working to increase the knowledge about these success stories in Oregon, the leadership here, and helping other states to replicate some of these successes going forward.

Ocean Frontiers presents a starting point to help ensure that these kinds of success stories are told and better understood, even right here in Oregon. You know the significance of the Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve and the Marine Protected Area, and the leadership role that Port Orford played in its development are not common knowledge east of the coast range, and we need to change that.

We need to illustrate that communities along the coast are taking important steps to invest in their own economic futures and in the conservation of our shared national resources. Not only can this garner additional support for these incredible grassroots efforts, but hopefully it will inspire communities across the state and beyond.

I am truly impressed with how innovative coastal communities are addressing challenges and reinventing their future. I believe that making the transition to a more resilient, prosperous, environmentally sound economy is the single greatest challenge and single greatest opportunity of our generations. And I believe you are taking a step in that direction.

I look forward to learning from you  and working with you in the months to come. I just want to say again I think what’s happening in this community and the examples in the film are incredibly important because it’s really easy right now to talk about what’s not working, and I think it’s very useful to have concrete examples of what is working, both economically and environmentally.

It’s interesting in the many, many years that I have been working on clean energy sustainable development projects it really, by far and away, we’re seeing much more progress and leadership happening with local and often rural communities in leading the way into these new sustainable, economic models.

I think it’s very important what is happening here with this community, but I think the replicability of this and your leadership and being able to export that to other communities will go well beyond the impacts here. I am really impressed. I am proud to be an Oregonian.


“The Redfish Rocks area south of Port Orford has been designated a marine reserve and a broader area of some 30 miles in length along the southern Oregon coast forming a unique 1,320-square-mile land and sea stewardship area is to protect terrestrial, freshwater, intertidal and ocean reserves… Located in the stewardship area headwaters along a 1000’ ridgetop overlooking old growth forest and the marine reserve, Ocean Mountain Ranch is a SLDI carbon-negative project that will provide for long-term yield of high-quality hardwood, softwood, and wildlife habitat while serving as a model organic forestry/grazing operation incorporating residential, agricultural, educational, recreational, and industrial activities to promote sustainable land development best practices on the southern Oregon coast by mixing nature, tradition, and economics for a sustainable future.”

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6 responses

  1. Ecotrust Blog

    Will the country follow its ocean pioneers?

    Ten years ago, some fishermen in the 40-boat town of Port Orford, in southern Oregon, decided to take hold of their future. They were beset by fishery closures, outcompeted by larger trawl fleets and frustrated by fishery management councils controlled by well-endowed industry interests.

    So they began working with scientists, Ecotrust and other groups to develop a marine stewardship plan for the area immediately off Port Orford and the land-based watersheds that feed it. They hatched plans to market their famous black cod and other local fish through a story of stewardship. And they eventually proposed Oregon’s first marine reserve, in the highly productive waters around Redfish Rocks reef, just off the port. Redfish Rocks was officially protected by the state in 2012.

    Fisherman Aaron Longton, 50, has been instrumental in Port Orford’s stewardship efforts, serving on the board of the Port Orford Ocean Resources Team and leading the nascent Port Orford Sustainable Seafood brand. And this February, he and his fishing colleagues earned a moment in the spotlight in Ocean Frontiers, a new documentary about cooperative ocean management across the country… http://blog.ecotrust.org/will-the-country-follow-its-ocean-pioneers/#comment-71

  2. Can you place a value on the impact to the atmosphere due to industrial activity? Or determine a cost  to wetlands and forests due to their loss from residential home construction? A professor at Simon Fraser University says we can, and we should.

    A new study from the Simon Fraser University School of Public Policy is calling for governments and private sector industries to fully cost the consequences of production and consumption on the natural environment… http://www.globe-net.com/articles/2012/march/21/putting-a-price-on-trees%2C-grass-and-air/#comments

  3. Speed of ocean acidification concerns scientists

    Press release issued 26 September 2012

    Speaking at the Third
    International Symposium on the Ocean in a High-CO2 World this week in
    Monterey, California, Dr Daniela Schmidt, a geologist from the
    University of Bristol, warned that current rates of ocean acidification
    are unparalleled in Earth history… http://www.bristol.ac.uk/news/2012/8811.html

  4. June 11, 2013 – This blog is being created by students in the courses Population Ecology and Biological Diversity at the University of Oregon.

    Keeping Marine Diversity High: A Marine Reserve Need – A newly constructed marine reserve in the local Oregon waters, Redfish Rocks Marine Reserve, is under current inspection on its success in restoring species diversity back into local waters after a drastic decline during the establishment of a life fish-fishery…. http://fullspectrumbiology.blogspot.com/2013/06/keeping-marine-diversity-high-marine.html

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