“To stand at the edge of the sea, to sense the ebb and flow of the tides, to feel the breath of a mist moving over a great salt marsh, to watch the flight of shore birds that have swept up and down the surf lines of the continents for untold thousands of years... is to have knowledge of things that are as nearly eternal as any earthly life can be.”
— Rachel Carson, The Edge of the Sea
“For the fishing industry, the Gulf of Maine is our home. That’s where most of our fishing is done and where we earn our living. we believe it needs to be protected from all the things that can threaten it. we need to work together to stay ever-vigilant.”
— Angela Sanfilippo, President, Gloucester Fishermen’s Wives Association
The Gulf of Maine, including the Bay of Fundy, is a world-class natural wonder that is shared by the Provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, and the States of Maine, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. Our people rely on it for their livelihoods, for recreation, and for personal renewal.
In spite of its amazing natural beauty and historical abundance of marine resources, the Gulf of Maine is a highly stressed ecosystem in urgent need of attention. Goal 1 addresses the region’s need for data, information, and partnerships to restore and conserve marine and coastal habitats.
Decision-makers in the Gulf of Maine require information to sustain human communities and to preserve ecological integrity. Goal 2 addresses the region’s need for data, information, and partnerships to ensure that environmental conditions support the health of people and the ecosystem.
The Gulf of Maine is a one of the world’s most dynamic environments. Nourished by cold ocean waters and characterized by a complex geomorphology made up of deep basins and shallow banks, this sea semi-enclosed sea is one of the most biologically productive marine ecosystems. Spanning 36,000 square miles (93,240 km2) of water, the Gulf of Maine is characterized by powerful tides which mix the influx of North Atlantic waters with fresh waters from 60 rivers which drain a large watershed spanning much of the provinces of Nova Scotia and New Brunswick and the states of Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts which border its coast.
Over 3,000 marine species and birds call the Gulf of Maine home. Coastal marshes and estuaries serve as nurseries and feeding grounds for fish, crabs, and shellfish, and abundant plankton provide the base of a rich food web all the way up to large fish, seals and whales. The Gulf of Maine provides a sanctuary for more than 30 species at risk, including the roseate tern and the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale.
The Gulf of Maine is bordered by Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. It covers 93,000 square kilometers (36,000 square miles) of ocean and has 12,000 kilometers (7,500 miles) of coastline.
Over the past quarter-century, the Gulf of Maine Council has strengthened alliances among those who share its vision for a healthy and vital region. It fosters this synergy by sharing stories of success, and by offering annual Gulf ocean health and of Maine awards. The Council has honored more than 200 individuals, organizations and businesses for their exceptional education commitment to sustain the Gulf watershed. [ Click here for more ]