The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrtion (NOAA), a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce, controls National Marine Sanctuaries and Estuarine Research Reserves. The two marine sanctuaries around Hawaii are the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument and the Hawaii Humpback Whale Marine Santuary. Papahanaumokuakea is the single largest fully protected conservation area in the U.S. There are no Estuarine Research Reserves in Hawaii.
According to their web site, their mission is "Science, Service and Stewardship," with the following elaboration:
To understand and predict changes in climate, weather, oceans and coasts
To share that knowledge and information with others
To conserve and manage coastal and marine ecosystems and resources
The third item has been instrumental in creating the sanctuaries and reserves.
Marine sanctuaries are places where you can both experience the beauty of coral reefs and, sadly, where you can experience the devastating effects that have occurred to them. In Trip 2, in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary and areas nearby, we focus on how a healthy coral reef ecosystem and the organisms that make it up function. Trip 12 is a time to see Pacific reefs. These are made up of different species than Atlantic reefs but the concept is similar. There are both healthy and unhealthy or dead reefs around Hawaii.