95% of the ocean remains unexplored.Take Action ↓
Life as we know it began in the ocean. A few billion years later and sea life continues to be the vibrant base supporting us all, regardless of where we live.
Seagrass beds, kelp forests, tiny phytoplankton, and other aquatic plants work tirelessly capturing 50-70% of our carbon emissions and producing half of the oxygen we need to breathe. Red and blue tinted crabs and lobsters scuttle across the sandy seafloor, past clusters of oysters and mussels that drift subtly with the rhythmic wave motion. Overhead, schools of shimmering fish dart in every direction to avoid diving sea birds, while on a nearby coral reef, a camouflaged octopus waits patiently for an afternoon snack to swim closer.
From the tiniest sea star to the largest tuna, our ocean holds about 90% of the planet’s total living biomass. We depend heavily on sea life for sustenance, medicines, livelihoods, protection, and so much more. Currently, over 3.1 billion people rely on fish as their primary source of protein. Despite its global social, economic, and cultural importance, sea life is threatened by the very life it supports. Human activities, such as unregulated coastal development, destructive fishing practices, increased ship traffic and ocean noise, have degraded and decimated marine habitats and sea life populations worldwide. As of 2016, over 85% of the world’s fisheries are classified as either fully exploited or critically overexploited. Yet, an average of roughly 7.3 million tons of sea creatures are caught, killed, then just thrown away every year.
The demise and general disregard for our ocean’s smaller life forms marks more than just the loss of a delicious food source— it means the loss of an identity, of a global connector. For years, people have come together over their love for Earth’s blue jungle. Kids spend sunny weekends on fishing trips with their parents, like their dads and moms did when they were little. Tourists rush to local seafood shacks to see if Maryland blue crabs, Maine lobsters, and Louisiana oysters are really as great as the state prides them to be. It’s not too late to defend our underwater friends. The truth stands that for life to exist on Earth, life in the sea must thrive.