| By Debra Kirby |
Did you know that World Oceans Day is celebrated June 8 each year and that it was officially recognized by the United Nations in December of 2008? Or that the Canadian government first proposed the idea at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992?
Each year World Oceans Day events are organized around a different theme, with this year’s focus on “plastic pollution prevention and cleaning the ocean of marine litter.” http://www.worldoceansday.org/
Even if you don’t live near an ocean, or are not planning to participate in an event on June 8, there are many things you can do to make a difference. Since all of Earth’s waterways are connected, what affects your local stream, river, or lake also eventually makes its way to the oceans. Here are a few easy things anyone can do throughout the year:
- Reuse, reuse, reuse! Whenever you have a choice, go for non-disposable items like shopping bags, refillable water bottles, and eating utensils. And recycle what you can’t reuse.
- Avoid pesticides and fertilizers in your yard and on the food you purchase.
- Use non-toxic cleaning products—or make your own using vinegar, baking soda, and lemon.
- Be a wise consumer of fish and seafood, always choosing sustainable versions.
- Reduce your carbon footprint to help fight against global warming and ocean acidification.
- Educate yourself and share what you learn with others.
An easy way to accomplish the last point is through Gale’s databases and eBooks, where there is always something new to learn.
Check out Science In Context, where you can:
- Begin by reading an overview of the world’s oceans
- Watch a video about ocean acidification
- Get hands on with one or more of these fun learning activities
Gale’s eBooks are also great sources of information for all ages. For example, middle school students can turn to resources like UXL Sustainable Living to find curriculum linked information at appropriate reading levels.
- Learn more about plastics and their effects on the oceans. Did you know that in one region of the Pacific Ocean the number of plastic pieces floating on the water was six times the amount of plankton?
- Or find out what other forms of water pollution are damaging our oceans and other water sources.
These are just a few of the many Gale resources where you can learn more about the world’s oceans to celebrate World Oceans Day this year. How will you observe World Oceans Day?