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The mission of the NMSP is to conserve, protect, and enhance the biodiversity, ecological integrity and cultural legacy of the nation's system of marine sanctuaries. Today there are thirteen national marine sanctuaries that protect over 18,000 miles of ocean, lakes and coast. The NMSP is devoted to protecting marine resources while accommodating all acceptable forms of public and private use of those resources. The NMSP is also maintains a monitoring program of the different marine environments to increase the public's understanding of marine ecosystems and assess the impacts of human activities.

The Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (CINMS)

President Jimmy Carter designated the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary (CINMS) on September 22, 1980. Located 22 nautical miles (25 miles) off the shores of Santa Barbara, California, the CINMS rests primarily within the Santa Barbara Channel region.

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