World Oceans Day is celebrated every year on June 8 across the world. This day is used to raise awareness of the role of oceans in our everyday lives.
Over centuries, humans actions have wreaked great damage on the oceans and its inhabitants. Extensive overfishing, pollution from farms,plastics and coastal destruction has adversely effected our oceans. Although there have been several conservation successes, we have a long way to go.
How do people celebrate this day? On this day people honour the oceans by organising beach clean–ups, interesting talks from conservationists, and evenexhibits of artwork crafted from marine debris. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic this year’s celebrations were different, with many events taking place online or in a socially-distanced way.
- Around 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered by oceans.
- About 70% of the oxygen we breathe is produced by the oceans. It is produced by marine plants, nearly all of which are marine algae. It is the heart of our planet, circulating heat and water and regulating our climate.
- The majority of life on Earth is aquatic. As so much of the Earth’s surface is underwater, it comes as no surprise that marine species outnumber those on land. But, it’s an incredible 94 per cent of the Earth’s living species that exist within the oceans
- Man has only explored about 5% of the world’s oceans.
- Oceans represent the largest active carbon sink on Earth. The oceans absorb both the excess heat generated by our greenhouse gas emissions, and absorb carbon dioxide itself, helping to reduce the impacts of climate change.
- The deepest known area of the Earth’s oceans is known as the Mariana Trench. It’s deepest point measures 11km. That’s a long dive down!
- The longest mountain range in the world is found under water. Stretching over 56,000km, the Mid-Oceanic Ridge is a mountain chain that runs along the centre of the ocean basins.
The ocean provides food, creates millions of jobs, is a source for medicines, and provides inspiration, respite and recreation.Our health and our ocean’s health are intertwined and it is important that we reflect on how to protect it.
We’d like to hear about what local ocean issues you are most concerned about.