Oceans take up the bulk of space on this planet and sustain many life forms, and yet, over the years, there have been growing concerns about pollution that is threatening marine life and triggering climate change.
Over 70 per cent of Earth is covered in water, which produces at least 50 per cent of the planet’s oxygen, thereby sustaining life, including human life. Of late, plastic pollution has risked the health of oceanic life — both flora and fauna.
World Oceans Day is celebrated every year on June 8, as a reminder that oceans are in need of support and that urgent decisions need to be taken to preserve and protect them. According to UN.org, already 90 per cent of big fish populations have depleted, and 50 per cent of coral reefs are destroyed; in fact, we are still so dependent on oceans that we are taking more than can be replenished.
In other words, there is a lack of balance.
This year’s theme for World Oceans Day is ‘Revitalization: collective action for the ocean’. This year, it is framed by the UN Decade of Ocean Science and the celebration of the United Nations Ocean Conference, which was cancelled these past two years because of the pandemic.
The concept of the day was first proposed in 1992 at the Earth Summit — UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
‘World Oceans Day’ was officially recognised by the United Nations in 2008.
According to UN.org, this year, the UN will host the “first hybrid celebration” of the annual event on June 8, hosted “in-person at the UN Headquarters in New York to be broadcasted live. It will highlight the 2022 theme”.