The early 1970s saw the creation of key environmental agencies like the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as well as passage of a host of environmental laws such as the Clean Water Act, the Marine Mammal Protection Act, and the Coastal Zone Management Act. Into this setting, Ocean Conservancy was born in 1972, first as the Delta Corporation, then as the Center for Environmental Education, and later as the Center for Marine Conservation, before becoming Ocean Conservancy in 2001. In the early years, our work focused on species like whales, seals and sea turtles. While we were a part of many success stories, we realized we couldn’t protect species without protecting their habitat. So we thought bigger and shifted to a more ecosystem-based approach. We were also one of the first environmental organizations to engage industries in conservation—a key part of our mission to this day. Over the years, our mission grew and solidified to make us who we are now: a science-based organization that stands on the absolute conviction that each individual can make a positive difference for our ocean. In 1986, the International Coastal Cleanup was launched when an Ocean Conservancy volunteer organized a beach cleanup in South Padre Island, Texas. Since then, this effort has rippled out across the globe, and has grown into a much valued experience that hundreds of thousands of people look forward to each fall — with more joining each year. Last year alone, over one million volunteers participated in the International Coastal Cleanup.