Healthy Oceans, Healthy Planet
As we all know, South Florida throws down some good fiestas, so how about putting that lively energy into celebrating World Oceans Day June 8th! This year’s theme is Healthy Oceans, Healthy Plant with a special effort focused on initiatives that stop plastic pollution.
Why celebrate the ocean?
The ocean serves as the lungs of our planet providing most of the oxygen we breath
The ocean regulates our climate
The ocean feeds millions of people every year
The ocean is a source for medicines
The ocean is home to an immense biodiversity of life
The ocean brings us happiness, peace, and a sense of well-being, otherwise known as a Blue Mind
Here are some small steps you can take to celebrate World Oceans Day every day:
1. Throw a Plastic-Free Party
Ask guests to bring a dish to share in a glass or ceramic container and use tableware made from sustainably sourced materials. Companies like Lean Orb and Eco-products produce products that are plastic-free, non-toxic, created from renewable or recycled content, and designed to biodegrade in a home or industrial compost.
2. Skip the Straw
Americans use (and throw away) about 500 million plastic straws each day – enough plastic to fill 127 school buses! Hollywood Beach and Miami Beach banned plastic straws, though straws are still evident on the beach due to little enforcement. June 8th may be a good day to remind hotels and restaurants of the local ordinances no matter where you live!
3. Guzzle From Growlers
Lucky for us, craft beer breweries have been popping up throughout South Florida and I’ve been happy to sip the suds from the beer growlers they sell. Growlers like the ones from Wynwood Brewing and Saltwater Brewery are air-tight jugs, typically made out of glass, ceramic or stainless steel that allow you to take draft beer from one place to another without a degradation of quality. They are good for the oceans because they are reusable so drinking from growlers reduces waste produced from beer bottles or cans.
4. Cool Down in The Water
Summer in South Florida is sweltering unless you’re near water, so invite your friends over to the pool or better yet, meet at the beach and enjoy the ocean. While you’re there, don’t forget to turn your thermostat to 78 degrees Fahrenheit before you leave the house. You can always cool it down once you get back home. Energy professionals know that
5. Eat Invasives
Making a meal of invasive species is a great way to combat them. In South Florida, the invasive lionfish has become a threat to healthy ecosystems. Originally from the Indo-Pacific, these venomous fish have few natural predators and, in turn, eat everything in their path. Lionfish derbies are helping to remove this invasive fish from local shallow waters and restaurants are now serving this delicate white fish blackened, fried, and grilled. Some of these restaurants serving up sustainable seafood are highlighted in this post.
The Miami Science Barge floating in Biscayne Bay Museum Park is an urban ecological laboratory and public environmental education center, powered by renewable energy. With an aim to catalyze local efforts to build a sustainable Miami, the Barge is a space for school field trips, public tours, workshops, and events on green design, urban planning, environmental science, and marine conservation, with particular attention to Miami’s potential as a global innovator and leader in climate change and sea level rise.
7. Be Part of The Solution
On June 9th, thousands of people are expected to converge in DC to March for the Ocean March and continue the fight to stop offshore oil drilling, end plastic pollution, and protect our coastlines. Broward County's March for the Ocean will be at Charnow Park on Hollywood Beach, Florida Broadwalk. The festivities begin at 9 am.
8. Dive In
Perhaps the best way to appreciate and celebrate the ocean is to dive in. Fortunately, organizations like the Coral Restoration Foundation provide you with a once in a lifetime opportunity to restore coral reefs during Coralpalooza! In this two day event June 8th and 9th, participants will dive alongside marine biologists for a day of outplanting the threatened Staghorn Coral (Acropora cervicornis) to reefs across the Florida Keys. If you ever wanted to experience what it’s like to be a marine biologist, this is your chance!
Do what you can, but do something.
LEARN how local Wave Makers are making a difference for our communities and planet during our weekly Facebook Livestream, Conversations by Water - Wednesdays at 3pm EST
EXPERIENCE the beauty of South Florida's blue backyard and schedule a private Blue Discovery Eco Tour by kayak
TRANSFORM your school, office, or home into an ocean-friendly environment and schedule an in-person consultation