On Earth Day, ocean conservation is unsung hero
Every Earth Day, people around the world make an effort to raise awareness for the environmental issues facing our planet. The vast majority of these events and actions are held on the ground – dry land covers just 30% of the planet, but many of us spend almost 100% of our time living on it. This Earth Day we ask you to consider the ocean, our planet’s unsung hero.
The ocean is the origin of life and its greatest champion. It covers 71% of our blue planet’s surface, and contains 99% of the habitat for all living creatures on Earth. One mouthful of ocean water can contain millions of bacterial cells, hundreds of thousands of phytoplankton and tens of thousands of zooplankton. Its inhabitants are world record holders: its Great Barrier Reef is the largest living structure on Earth; its blue whale is bigger than any dinosaur that ever walked on land.
Humans have explored less than 10% of the ocean; yet we use it to conduct 90% of our international trade and 50% of our communications. Unfortunately, 80% of marine pollution comes from human terrestrial activities. Research by The Ocean Project has found that almost half of Americans (~45%) believe ”what I do in my life doesn’t impact ocean health much at all.” Isn’t it time we give ocean conservation the recognition it deserves, and take responsibility for how our actions affect its health for future generations?
The ocean is in peril
The ocean has always had a special place in our hearts, since the days of the first sailors it has been loved for its beauty and feared for its mystery and power. For many it seems so vast and eternal—how could humans possibly affect it? Unfortunately, this has resulted in an ocean which has been mistreated and public which doesn’t know it needs to be protected.
Increasingly, scientists and others are recognizing that our world’s ocean faces dire threats: from climate change and ocean acidification, to massive overfishing and habitat destruction from poor fishing practices, to pollution, including plastics, nutrients, and much more. One chilling report predicts the possible collapse of the global ocean food web by 2050 if present unsustainable impacts continue.
Join World Oceans Day in starting a movement to protect the ocean
It is clear that the ocean’s future depends on a community which takes action for its protection. Take your ocean action beyond Earth Day and join us in highlighting the ocean in all its glory – celebrate World Oceans Day on June 8th.
For nine years we’ve been working to grow a movement dedicated to making a commitment to the ocean widespread through World Oceans Day; and the celebration is bigger than ever! This day of celebration and action is driven by people like you, who helped us convince the United Nations to officially recognize World Oceans Day as June 8th each year in 2008.
World Oceans Day is an awesome opportunity to not only raise awareness of the threats facing the ocean, but to take action to address those threats. You can learn more about how to plan your own event at http://WorldOceansDay.org/ideas.