Established during the summit on environment and development held in Rio de Janero in 1992 and officially recognized in 2008 also by the United Nations Assembly which set the date for 8 June, World Ocean Day aims to raise awareness and safeguard the oceans as a fundamental ecosystem of our planet extremely threatened by climate change and human action.
The oceans cover more than 70% of the Earth's surface, host about 80% of the planet's biodiversity and are capable of producing 50% of the oxygen in the atmosphere. Climate change, wild fishing and tons of waste and plastics seriously threaten an extremely fragile and delicate ecosystem.
It is estimated that at today's levels of warming and acidification of water masses, by 2050 we could lose all coral reefs (to date, 50% have already been lost), very important ecosystems that play a fundamental role in terms of view of marine biodiversity.
In 2020, the theme of Oceans Day was "Innovation for a sustainable ocean" (identified by the hashtag #ProtectOurHome) where an appeal is made to world leaders in adopting policies aimed at protecting 30% of the seas and oceans within 2030. Sign the petition here.
This protection initiative, proposed by the United Kingdom, is therefore called "30x30" (#30by30) and aims to create a network of Marine Protected Areas to protect marine ecosystems, fish species and preserve biodiversity.
The theme of the 2021 edition of World Oceans Day is "The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods", a significant declaration of intent that continues the decade of challenges of the 30x30 initiative in achieving, by 2030, Sustainable Development Goal 14: "Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources".
In 2022 its 30th edition takes place with the theme "Revitalization: collective action for the ocean" which calls each of us to action to restore life in the oceans with small gestures too often damaged by human action and from climate change.
Goal 14 of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development plans to protect the ocean ecosystem by using the resources it provides us according to a criterion of sustainability. To this end and to support the various countries in achieving this goal, the UN has established the "Decade of ocean sciences for sustainable development" which runs from 2021 to 2030.
In celebration of the World Oceans Day 2023 theme: "Planet Ocean: The tides are changing", a series of keynotes, panel discussions, presentations and performances will be held to highlight humanity's interconnectedness with the ocean and illustrate its multi-sector potential.
The many missed opportunities and the work being done to better understand the wonders of the ocean and all that it has to offer will also be highlighted. It's time to put the ocean first.