Happy World Oceans Day! “Turn the Tide” on plastic pollution!
Happy World Oceans Day!
Oceans. I’ve been in love with the ocean from the first time I saw the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. Since then, I’ve spent a lot of time in, on or under the Caribbean Sea as a scuba diver, as well as the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and the Mediterranean Sea.
When I learned there is an annual World Oceans Day, I wanted to do my part to spread the word. On World Oceans Day, June 8, 2017, observances to promote ocean conservation are planned throughout the world, and beyond this one day celebration we can all take steps to “Turn the Tide” and do our part to make our oceans cleaner and safer for the beautiful creatures that inhabit them.
Did you know?
• Oceans generate most of the oxygen we breathe. According to information taken from a National Geographic article, “…rainforests are responsible for roughly one-third (28%) of the Earth’s oxygen but most (70%) of the oxygen in the atmosphere is produced by marine plants.”
• Oceans help feed us. (Global per capita fish consumption has risen to above 20 kilograms (44 lbs.) a year for the first time in 2016. Source: FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) )
• Oceans regulate our climate. (The ocean plays a fundamental role in shaping the climate zones we see on land. Even areas hundreds of miles away from any coastline are still largely influenced by the global ocean system. Source and for more info: Ocean Explorer – NOAA – Climate Facts )
• Oceans clean the water we drink.
• Oceans offer a pharmacopoeia of medicines. (NOAA scientists have extracted chemicals from corals and sponges that fight some of the worst infectious bacteria.)
And we all know they provide limitless inspiration!
This year’s theme, “Turn the Tide,” focuses on plastic pollution prevention.
Three big ways we can all help keep plastic trash out of our oceans and away from its animals is by choosing:
• Reusable shopping bags
• Refillable water bottles
• Not using plastic straws
Jean-Michel Cousteau, President, Ocean Futures Society, said in an open letter on his website: “… Ocean-based business and investment present well over $500 billion to the world’s economy, with more than half of the global population living within the coastal zone. Many people depend on the ocean, with one out of six jobs in the US as ocean related. As such a substantial resource, we must become better stewards of our global seas, protecting it for future generations to come.”
World Oceans Day has been celebrated every June 8th since its proposal in 1992 at the UN Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro Brazil. An annual conservation day, World Oceans Day both honors and aids in the protection of our ocean home.
Several websites have provided resource material for this post and can provide more information for those interested in supporting efforts to protect and conserve our global oceans: