Yearly, on June 8, World Oceans Day recognizes 71% of our planet as an interconnected entity since all oceans are linked and flow together as one. Marine life moves without regard for ocean label. Unfortunately, so does acid rain and pollution that can move from one part of the world ocean into adjacent waters.
The Canadian delegation first proposed the concept of a World Ocean Day at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. Invited to give the opening address, fresh from her flight aboard STS-Discovery, Dr. Roberta Bondar supported the concept in her presentation of the “one” ocean views from space and led a discussion about the planet. Within a few years, organizations like The Ocean Project, then UN World Oceans Day, promoted more and more ocean awareness events and celebrations around the world.
Did You Know?
Canada’s coastline fronts the Pacific Ocean to the west, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Arctic Ocean to the north — the longest coastline in the world at 202,080 km (125,567 mi) — that’s coast to coast to coast!
The United Nations officially recognized this day in 2008 as a yearly international celebration. This day that calls attention to our ocean world honours decades of work by Maritime law pioneers and environmentalists such as Professor Elisabeth Mann Borgese – “Mother of the Oceans”, initiator and organizer of the first conference on the law of the sea, on Malta, in 1970, and contributor to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea [UNCLOS].
Why celebrate World Oceans Day? Our survival depends on a healthy world ocean. The world ocean generates oxygen, food, and medicines. It regulates climate and provides recreational pleasure and inspiration.
Giving World Oceans Day an international focus helps engage us to take responsibility to care for the ocean as it cares for us. World Oceans Day increases international awareness of how we can work together to help improve ocean health and to support efforts that reverse the declining health of marine ecosystems.
Although 75% of the world’s fisheries are now overexploited, depleted or recovering from overexploitation, the restoration of the world ocean is a solvable global ecological challenge that we can manage effectively if we work together to reverse the pollution, acidification, and overexploitation that degrades the marine environment.
THE UNITED NATIONS OCEAN DECADE
In 2020 #WorldOceansDay began to grow the global movement calling world leaders to protect 30% of our planet by 2030. This critical conservation, called #30×30, aims to set a global target of safeguarding at least 30% of the land and 30% of the ocean by 2030 in a network of highly protected areas to help ensure a healthy home for all.
Working together around our one global ocean we can take on the many challenges we face.
Here are some useful ocean-based RESOURCE materials:
From the Official United Nations World Oceans Day Portal:
Ocean-Inspired Curriculum For Students / Parents / Teachers
education materials, videos, infographics
From the World Oceans Day Organization:
Early learning and youth with Ocean Research programs Resources include Activities to Reef Cams to Water Cycle & Watersheds
More early learning resources Splash & Bubbles and Junior youth resources Octonauts
For each of us, as individuals, let’s continue to curb our plastic addiction! Check out how we can help oceans in this Blue The Film Vimeo:
B Bondar / Real World Content Advantage