It's Wednesday, June 8, 2011 - World Ocean Day. And while I'm laying about , nursing a sore throat and cold, I'll still do my part to commemorate this international recognition of the world's oceans. And you can too.
World Ocean Day began in 1992 by Canada, following an ocean summit held in Brazil. It was recognized by the United Nations in 2008 and has since been coordinated by The Ocean Project and the World Ocean Network. There are many activities taking place worldwide today on behalf of the oceans, but if it's a little late in the game for you to personally participate, never fear. You can still do your part.
Sustainable Seafood - If going to a restaurant or supermarket with seafood on your mind, make sure it is considered part of the sustainable seafood group that provides as little of an impact as possible to depleted fish stocks. Don't know what to choose? Then check out the sustainable seafood listings from the Blue Ocean Institute or the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Or better still, no seafood consumed today.
No Plastic Bags - The infamous, single-use disposable plastic bag has, rightfully, become a target of municipal legislation as these throwaway items do considerable harm when they end up in the sea and are biodegradable if only disposed of in the right set of circumstances (a delicate combination of heat, light, and microbes - and still it takes many years). If you're doing any shopping then insist on a paper bag made from recycled paper or, better still, carry your own bag or bags. There are bags now available in many stores, made of recycled material and at a very reasonable cost.
Don't Spew the Fossil Fuel - Carbon dioxide that makes its way into the oceans can generate acidification - what is being recognized as one of the greatest threats the world's oceans face. Minimize your carbon footprint today by driving as little as possible - whether you are driving a gas hog, hybrid, or even an all-electric (there's carbon produced in the making of those batteries). If possible, hit the road on a bicycle or by foot. A little exercise - your heart will thank you for it.
Support Your Ocean Organizations - Even in these difficult economic times, today would be a great day to donate to the ocean conservation organization of your choice, whether it be a local group or a major international effort. But be sure to look into what the organization has accomplished. It's results that you are looking for to ensure that your donation will be well-spent. So, take that $10 you might have spent on a Big Mac Meal with fries - following your arduous bike ride around town - and put it where it will do some good on behalf of the oceans.
Simple. Just a few steps in the right direction that can have an impact, particularly if multiplied by millions across the globe. And, hey, I've got a crazy idea: after doing your part to help the oceans today - let's do it tomorrow! And the day after. And the day after that. And so on.
Crazy radicalism, but the oceans will thank you for it.
Learn more about World Ocean Day at:
The Ocean Project
World Ocean Network