Environment Massachusetts wished a "happy birthday" to crucial protections for a little-known but ecologically valuable marine habitat off the state's coast.

Sept. 15 marked the second anniversary of the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. The monument, comprised of three underwater canyons and four "seamounts" more than a mile underwater, is the only fully protected marine habitat in the Atlantic and supports dolphins, squid and more than 100 species of deep-sea coral.

“For the black coral 150 miles southeast of Cape Cod, these last two years have been monumental,” said Kelsey Lamp, a campaign associate with our national network. “As our oceans change with the climate and adapt to the other stress humans are placing on them, protecting these ecosystems will be essential to marine species, large and small.”

Environment Massachusetts and our national network are defending the monument against attempts to reduce its size or the scope of its protections.

Read more here. 

Photo: Massachusetts residents wish Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument a happy second birthday. Credit: Staff.