Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Blue Vision Summit 3: ocean conservationists bring the issues to Washington

Beginning this Friday, the third Blue Vision Summit will get underway in Washington D.C. Organized as a coming together of like-minded ocean conservationists and advocates, its goal is to focus on solutions to the many problems facing the ocean environment. With distinguished speakers and panelists, the summit runs through the weekend and culminates on Monday with a storming of the Bastille - actually a move to the halls of Congress to personally meet with legislators and discuss ocean issues.

I will be there, taking notes and meeting some new faces and catching up with some colleagues I have met before (You see? Not everybody stays in touch via Facebook!). There will be presentations and discussion groups on everything from acidification to ocean plastic to the aftermath and legacy of the Gulf oil spill - with opinions and recommendations from some of the leading experts in the field of ocean science, policy & management, and education.

"Join the Blue Frontier Campaign and members of the national and international marine community at Blue Vision Summit 3 as we come together to raise the profile of our community and work towards the enactment and enforcement of national ocean policy, addressing climate change impacts and Gulf restoration. Since the last summit, we have seen a strengthened bottom-up blue movement and a first national ocean policy. Recent setbacks in our efforts for healthy seas such as the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and on-going and growing concerns over the collapse of marine wildlife and ocean acidification reinforce the importance and timeliness of this event. We hope you will join us at the summit and in our efforts to create healthy marine environments. The 2011 Blue Vision Summit will include the 4th Annual Peter Benchley Ocean Awards. The ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, May 21st and it will conclude the day’s sessions. "

The Blue Vision Summit is the brainchild of David Helvarg, ocean conservationist, accomplished author, and director of the Blue Frontier Campaign, a recognized ocean conservation non-profit. The first Blue Vision Summit was in 2004, followed by 2009, and now this one - that couldn't come at a more important time what with the Gulf Oil Spill and a new ocean policy that is besieged by many politicians who, it seems, consider protecting the marine environment and endangered species as inconsequential priorities compared to the economic demands of big oil and other interests. The long-term consequences seem to elude them.

If you would like to attend the Blue Vision Summit, check out the event's website. Even if you can't make it, just perusing through the website will give you an idea as to the topics of discussion, and I am sure there will be plenty of post-summit follow up on the website. And I will post my impressions of the summit and what strategies and battle plans these ocean advocates have in mind to protect our seas now and in the future.

Visit the Blue Vision Summit 3 website.
Learn more about the Blue Frontier Campaign.

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