There are a couple of marine conservation success stories to tout - proof that humans CAN get it right when they come together.
Thirty years ago, there were 62 green turtle nests on the beaches of Florida. Today there are 35,000.
The leatherback turtle was critically endangered, according to the IUCN. In this year's Red List, it's been upgraded several steps to Vulnerable. (The Pacific populations are still in trouble, but Atlantic leatherbacks are rebounding solidly.) The leatherback is the largest and most wide-ranging of the sea turtles: it can weigh a ton, and Hemingway's fisherman in The Old Man and the Sea calls it the "trunk turtle," which is fitting for an animal that does look a bit like luggage. It is so large it's been implicated in some "sea monster" sightings.
On the other hand, there are 55 adult Maui's dolphins in the waters off New Zealand. The government is taking conservations measures, but critics call them half-measures, and say the animal is swiftly departing the planet.
Dr Barbara Maas says, "New Zealand's failure to protect the world's smallest and rarest dolphin is
a bitter blow to marine conservation." But she insists that, if better protection from fishing nets and other threats is enacted, "They are not doomed to extinction. Genetic variability is still high, they can bounce back but saving them is a
race against time."