Don’t live by a beach? Never been SCUBA diving or surfing? Don’t worry, everyone can play an important role in protecting the ocean– on World Oceans Day and every day! Whether we live on the coast or miles away from the sea, we are all connected to the ocean and can take action to positively impact ocean health.
This year celebrate World Oceans Day wherever you live by planning a community event!
Run for the Oceans
Host a foot race in your community and raise money to benefit an ocean conservation organization of your choice. Last year, the North Carolina Zoo hosted the Run Wild 5K. This year, you can join the virtual World Oceans Day 5K/10K. A virtual run can be done at any location and time during the open event date, simply choose your location then run, walk, jog, bike or even treadmill your 5K/10K at your pace. Submit your results and receive your medal!
Host an Aquatic Cleanup
You don’t have to live directly on the ocean to clean a marine environment. Clean up your local river or lake instead! In Calgary, Alberta, Canada, a cleanup was held at Mahogany Lake where SCUBA divers cleaned the lake, and the community was invited to meet the divers and clean up the lake shores as well. Download the Aquatic Cleanup Guide for a step by step guide to organizing your own cleanup. Looking for more ways to protect your local waterway and keep it clean? Visit the Waterkeeper Alliance website for more information on becoming a Waterkeeper!
Bring the Oceans to the Big Screen
Can’t see the ocean in person? Bring the ocean to you and your community by hosting a film screen. Take a look at some our suggested films. The Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival screened two ocean films in their community in Wyoming to teach residents that despite the fact that they are landlocked, they are all connected to the ocean.
Organize a workshop to engage youth
Get youth involved and bring them closer to the marine life that might seem so far away with a series of workshops. The Science Center AHHAA based in Estonia, had a variety of workshops including laboratory work on corals, a science show, and an experiment on the salinity of sea water. Hands-on workshops like these are a great way for youth to better understand their connection to the sea no matter where they live.
Swap your Products
Despite advances in making home and personal care products eco-friendlier, there are still a number of products that can be harmful to the marine environment. No matter where you live harmful chemicals and plastic microbeads that are washed down the drain can make through waterways and eventually to the ocean. Host an event where participants can bring these products to be disposed of properly. Last year, the Colorado Ocean Coalition encouraged their celebration participants to bring their sunscreens that contain oxybenzone or octinoxate for a free non-toxic, river and ocean friendly sample of Goddess Garden Organics. The Butterfly House and Marine Coveencouraged visitors to bring plastic bags they no longer needed so that they could properly recycle them.
Cook Sustainable Seafood
Are you a seafood lover even though you live miles away from the ocean? This World Oceans Day, make sure your seafood choices are as ocean friendly as possible no matter where you are. The Georgia Aquarium hosted a sustainable sushi class where participants learned a little about sustainable seafood, why they should care and what they can do, and everyone took home their own bamboo mat and chopsticks as well as a recipe card for additional items to make at home. Can’t find a class near you? Make sustainable seafood at home and download the Seafood Watch app for recommendations, or browse seafood guides by country available through World Wildlife Fund.
Don’t forget to submit your event to the World Oceans Day map!