Action timeline

December 20, 2007 – The Center filed a scientific petition with the National Marine Fisheries Service to list the ribbon seal under the Endangered Species Act due to threats to its habitat from global warming.

March 21, 2008 – After the Fisheries Service missed its deadline to issue an initial determination on our petition, we filed a notice of intent to sue the agency.

March 26, 2008 – The Fisheries Service announced a finding that the petition presented substantial information that the ribbon seal may deserve protection; the agency declared it would begin a review of the species' status to determine if listing is warranted. It also announced a status review for three other ice seal species: the bearded, ringed, and spotted seals.

December 23, 2008 – Ignoring overwhelming science showing the ribbon seal's danger from global warming, the Fisheries Service denied the species Endangered Species Act protection.

March 31, 2009 – The Center filed a notice of intent to sue the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration over its failure to grant the ribbon seal necessary federal protections.

September 3, 2009 – The Center and Greenpeace filed suit against the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for denying protections to the ribbon seal.

July 9, 2013 – The Obama administration denied Endangered Species Act protection to Arctic ribbon seals.

Photo by Josh London/NOAA