Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Sylvia Earle's Birthday Wish

My birthday wish for 2011 is to underscore the “one wish to change the world” that I was asked to make for the 2009 TED Prize:

"I wish you would use all means at your disposal – Films! Expeditions! The Web! New submarines! – to create a campaign to ignite public support for a global network of Marine Protected Areas, hope spots large enough to save and restore the blue heart of the planet.
How much? Some say 10 per cent. Some say 30 per cent. You decide. How much of your heart do you want to protect? Whatever it is, a fraction of one per cent is not enough".

In support of the “wish”, in March 2010, a TED-led expedition to the Galapagos Islands launched Mission Blue – an initiative aimed at inspiring global support to take care of the ocean that so fundamentally takes care of us. With help from TED, the National Geographic, the Waitt Foundation, the Sylvia Earle Alliance (SEAlliance), and numerous allies, Mission Blue is underway, celebrating the success of many who are making a difference for the ocean.

The good news for 2011is a significant increase in protection by the U.K. for the Chagos Archipelago, by Chile for the waters around Salas y Gomez, by Costa Rica for the Cocos Islands, greater protection for sharks in Hawaii, the Republic of Palau, Honduras and the Maldives – and more! Pacific Island nations are collaborating in an effort to greatly increase the size and scope of safe havens for ocean wildlife.

Awareness is growing about the need to reform fishing policies. Momentum is growing on many fronts, from the Sargasso Sea to the Ross Sea and beyond.

You can help keep these trends moving in the right direction. Your voice counts!

Join me on Facebook and Twitter and share your thoughts and news using the unique hashtag #savetheseas to track progress this week and beyond. Do what you can to stay connected. The ocean gives us life; we must give back-- an enduring gift from us to the future.

Sylvia Earle