As climate change rages on, we are seeing various adverse effects from the crisis. From severe weather patterns to changes in currents to an abnormal increase in surface temperatures to increasingly bad droughts, habitat loss, and species extinction. Hope can seem far away and motivation can get lost, but these organizations and individuals aren’t quitting because of doomsday. Here are seven inspirational organizations that are pushing for the conservation and protection of our oceans.
California State Coastal Conservancy
In 1976, the California State Coastal Conservancy began its mission to protect the 840 miles of pacific coastline, including the expansive coastal watersheds and the Bay Area, under its watch. The State agency makes it a goal to create recreational access for as many people as possible while ensuring protection for the many wildlife species in and around the watershed areas. The balance between human access and environmental protection is always in mind.
Dr. Sylvia Earle found a love like no other in the oceans, which empowered her to create a global coalition working towards giving rightful protection where it needs to be. Earle has spent thousands of hours diving in the waters building an aquatic relationship few land animals have. This experience has enabled her to see how certain areas play a more impactful role in planetary health than others called Hope Spots. The Mission Blue team partners with many other organizations around the world to achieve their common goal of protecting the ocean.
Parley for the Oceans
Communication and connection are essential when working to protect the ocean. Parley is an organization that offers a place for creators, activists, and ocean supporters to join together while addressing the pressures humans are causing on the aquatic environment. From the runways at New York Fashion Week to the formative floor of the United Nations, Parley unites people in conversation who are fighting to clean up our dirty human behaviors.
Save the Waves
Surfing is an environmentally dependent sport that encourages a relationship between humans and the natural ways of the ecosystem. This is the reason the Save the Waves Coalition exists. Save the Waves gives a place for surfers, like Greg Long, to band together in an effort to protect surf spots around the world. Passionate sports like surfing are a driving reason for intimate relationships between humans and the natural world.
Sea Change Project
Conservation is not the only effort that needs to take place to protect ocean environments. Time and space for regeneration are necessary components to save the oceans, which is the goal of the Sea Change Project. This organization focuses primarily on the kelp forest off the coast of Cape Town, South Africa. To ignite the urge for humans to connect with the mission of regeneration and rewilding of the ocean ecosystem, the Sea Change Project brings together storytellers. These storytellers use emotion to build a connection between humans and the underwater ecosystem.
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Laws that seek to protect our oceans and wildlife are the most effective way to enforce immediate change. Since 1981, Sea Shepherd Conservation has sought to protect all species in the oceans and all oceanic ecosystems through lawful development. By working with coastal and island governments, the organization is supporting the fight against illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing practices, which is the main cause of oceanic decimation. Although founder Captain Paul Watson has resigned, his original mission still drives the organization today.
Surfrider Foundation was founded in 1984 in Malibu, California, and now has 176 chapters and student clubs. Its mission to protect oceanic environments is accomplished through a focus on plastic reduction, increased beach access, preservation of coastlines, and increasing the health and sustainability of the water. Including a diversity of people in the fight to support healthy oceans is a key element of the Surfrider Foundation.