Monday, July 16 , 2018, 11:49 am | Fair 71º

 
 
 
 

Letter to the Editor: World Oceans Day — Let’s Celebrate Together

June 8 is World Oceans Day, a day to celebrate the gifts the ocean provides to us and to draw attention to the issues threatening our ocean’s health. In our busy world, why should we invest energy and attention in the ocean? Because the ocean is vital to our lives, our economy and our way of life.

A healthy ocean provides jobs, food and recreation opportunities that humans want and need, now and into the future. In Southern California, more than 134,000 jobs are generated from fishing, tourism, transportation and shipping. Tourism alone contributes more than $20 billion to our economy.

Aside from its economic value, the ocean provides both tourists and residents the opportunity for recreation and relaxation whether by boating, fishing, wildlife watching, scuba diving, swimming or sunbathing at the beach. For many people, an afternoon at the beach enjoying wildlife such as seabirds, fish, dolphins, seals and whales is priceless. A healthy ocean is crucial to the success of our economy and environmental stewardship.

But the ocean is facing threats from a variety of sources, including climate change and pollution. It is our responsibility to take care of the ocean and address these issues. To do so, we must educate ourselves and our communities and take action. What can you do?

» Attend World Oceans Day: Be part of the growing global celebration and participate in an event near you. All events are listed at worldoceansday.org.

» Learn and explore: Visit your local beach, coastal park or national marine sanctuary, or virtually at thankyouocean.org.

» Protect: Keep pollutants, plastics and trash from entering storm drains and waterways; enjoy responsible wildlife viewing, and be a responsible angler.

» Volunteer: Join a beach or stream cleanup event with a local nonprofit organization.

» Speak up: Tell a friend, inspire our youth or write to an elected official to express your support for action to protect healthy oceans.

We, the members of the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary’s Advisory Council, encourage you to be engaged, learn and share your knowledge about the ocean. We are fortunate to have one of the 13 U.S. national marine sanctuaries easily accessible off our coast.

These things we all agree on: A healthy ocean matters for our planet, our economy and our future. We must all work together to protect it. Let’s make every day World Oceans Day.

Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary
Advisory Council

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