Love Our Oceans
June 8 is World Oceans Day, the United Nations day for celebrating the role of the oceans in our everyday life and inspiring action to protect the ocean and sustainably use marine resources.
Communities around the world have been celebrating this day since 1992.
From 2016-2019 the Sunshine Coast Conservation Association has partnered with the District of Sechelt to present “Sechelt Oceans Day” event to showcase and celebrate the region’s incredible marine assets and raise awareness about how residents and visitors may become active stewards of our oceans.
In 2020, when we do not come together physically in a safe way due to the Covid 19 pandemic, we decided to create a video to highlight and celebrate the incredible diversity of marine life found in our own “backyard” on the Sunshine Coast. Life Beneath the Surface is a underwater tour filmed in ?alhtulich (Sechelt Inlet) and the Salish Sea, in the territory of the shíshálh Nation.
Inspired by the making of the video and the amazing response to it, in 2021 we are collaborating with the Green Film Series, to host a coastwide World Ocean’s Day Film Festival event.
Through feature films, shorts, webinars, and other resources, we aim to raise awareness and knowledge of the magnificence and challenges facing life in our wild oceans. We hope to inspire people to get involved and help keep our oceans healthy and productive. Through this we event we hope to connect people with local activities and groups working to help recover the abundance of life in our oceans and build support for the worldwide movement to protect 30% of our blue planet by 2030 (“30×30”).
The SCCA gratefully acknowledges funding support from the District of Sechelt for this project.
From the United Nations
Why Ocean Matters
The world’s oceans – their temperature, chemistry, currents and life – drive global systems that make the Earth habitable for humankind. Our rainwater, drinking water, weather, climate, coastlines, much of our food, and even the oxygen in the air we breathe, are all ultimately provided and regulated by the sea. Throughout history, oceans and seas have been vital conduits for trade and transportation.
Careful management of this essential global resource is a key feature of a sustainable future. However, at the current time, there is a continuous deterioration of coastal waters owing to pollution and ocean acidification, which has an adversarial effect on the functioning of ecosystems and biodiversity. This is also negatively impacting small scale fisheries.
Marine protected areas need to be effectively managed and well-resourced and regulations need to be put in place to reduce overfishing, marine pollution and ocean acidification.
Celebrating its importance
For all these reasons, it was necessary to create awareness through an Observance. That is why, by its resolution 63/111 of 5 December 2008, the UN General Assembly designated 8 June as World Oceans Day.
The concept of a ‘World Oceans Day’ was first proposed in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro as a way to celebrate our world’s shared ocean and our personal connection to the sea, as well as to raise awareness about the crucial role the ocean plays in our lives and the important ways people can help protect it.
To raise awareness about the role the United Nations and international law can play in the sustainable development and use of the oceans and their living and non-living resources, the UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea is actively coordinating different activities for World Oceans Day.