Protect Blue asks - Can we use World Ocean Day as a way to affect real change?

World Ocean Day has been organised and promoted by The Ocean Project since 2002 and is the perfect day for celebrating all things ocean. But local creative agency, Protect Blue has been exploring how we can go one step further than celebration.

Working alongside Jersey National Park, Eco Active, Visit Jersey, Jersey Sports & Plastic Free Jersey, Protect Blue believes Jersey has the potential to become a leader in the ocean advocacy space, and is rolling out a number of events & initiatives around World Ocean Day to help make that happen.

World Oceans Day Matt Porteous

Photo Credit Matt Porteous Studio M

The threats to ocean health have become mainstream news in the last 18 months - we’re all much more aware of the problems that plastic pollution is having on our environment and thanks to activists like Greta Thunberg, climate change has shifted, thank goodness, to the top of our priority list, with the Government of Jersey declaring a Climate Emergency at the beginning of May.

And so the question that inspires Protect Blue is this - Is it enough to celebrate the ocean and raise awareness of the problems it faces ? Or is there a way to have a greater impact and affect real change ?

Real change requires knowledge and experience - an understanding of the issues we’re facing and a connection to the cause that goes beyond an intellectual one. It also requires engagement from across all sectors - community, education & business.

Community

“No one will protect what they don't care about; and no one will care about what they have never experienced” - Sir David Attenborough

Protect Blue is collaborating with local organisations, businesses and coastal service providers over the weekend of 08 and 09 June to give as many islanders and visitors access to 'Blue Mind’ as possible. 

Blue Mind:
The science that shows how being near, in, on, or under water can make you happier, healthier, more connected, and better at what you do. - Wallace J Nichols

Jersey offers endless Blue Mind opportunities and enables islanders to make their livelihoods from the sea. World Ocean Day endeavours to celebrate that connection with the local community and visitors.  From surf lessons to rock climbing, coastal walks to guided meditation classes, marine conservation education sessions, beach cleans, photography workshops & kayak adventures - there will be a diverse array of activities (some free, some discounted) & special events for islanders to get involved with. Many of the activities will take place in and around the Jersey National Park.

"The premier aims of the Jersey National Park are to protect, conserve and enhance the natural beauty, cultural heritage and diverse wildlife contained within its coastal boundaries. By so doing, its dramatic land and seascape can be enjoyed by everyone who visits - now and for the future" Mike Stentiford MBE - Jersey National Park.

Showcasing best practice in ocean advocacy

Outdoor activity providers are well versed in delivering a safety briefing before their sessions - it’s something we’ve all come to expect. Why not, given the importance of protecting our ocean, include an environmental briefing?

Alongside UK based Wild Labs, Protect Blue is creating a free educational resource for all coastal service providers - with the aim to integrate a basic introduction to ocean literacy (understanding the oceans influence on us and our influence on the ocean) and messaging around the importance of protecting our coastlines and ocean into all their sessions.

Education 

Protect Blue is working with Eco Active to integrate a week long environmental education curriculum across 6 primary schools across the island this Autumn. The curriculum, Ambassadors for the Planet has been developed in partnership with Starboard and the UN Technology & Innovation Labs and combines design thinking & sustainability to enable kids to come up with their own solutions for the challenges our planet faces.

Business
On the eve of World Ocean Day, Protect Blue will host a Meet Blue event with guest speaker Alan Laubsch exploring ocean advocacy, blue carbon and an earth positive economy. Essentially, Laubsch will be asking how best we can use business as a force for good.

Alan is an internationally recognized thought-leader in risk management. As one of 25 founding members of the RiskMetrics Group (now part of MSCI), he authored Risk Management: A Practical Guide (1999) and published articles in the Asia Wall Street Journal and other financial media.   

Alan is inspired by evolutionary ecosystems, and his most recent publication is Adaptive Risk Management: Powered by Network Science. Alan’s mission is to catalyze a global risk culture to protect the systems that sustain us. 

Alan started the Natural Capital Markets group at Lykke Corp, and listed TREE, the world’s first mangrove and carbon credit backed digital token. 
“Alan is an inspiration when it comes to doing business more intelligently, e.g. saving the planet while still making profit. That's something I truly believe every business should be doing, there's always an option.” - Mari Männistö, CEO at SHIFT Business Festival