World Oceans Day is on June 8, 2019. World Oceans Day is an opportunity for people from around our blue planet to celebrate the ocean which connects us all and upon which we are all dependent.
For WILDCOAST, we have a lot to celebrate on this World Oceans Day.
During the 2018-2019 sea turtle nesting season in Oaxaca, Mexico, more than 16 million olive ridley sea turtles hatched on the 9.3 mile beach of Morro Ayuta. WILDCOAST helped establish a conservation concession on the beach with Mexico’s National Commission for Protected Areas to protect this critical sea turtle nesting site.
Since January, we have helped 497 student community scientists collect data in California’s marine protected areas (MPAs). This data is being used to help guide adaptive management of coastal resources across the state. For many of these students it was their first time to local MPAs.
We recently launched our first mangrove restoration project in Laguna San Ignacio on the Baja California Peninsula. In partnership with local communities and federal agencies, we will be restoring nearly 100 acres of degraded mangrove forest. Additionally, we have helped protect 8,648 acres of mangroves in northwest Mexico through conservation concessions in an effort to mitigate climate change.
The research we have conducted with Griffith University in Australia shows that the ongoing protection of these and other mangroves will help Mexico meet its climate goals as part of the Paris Agreement. In fact, the carbon stored within about 38,000 acres of mangroves that we are trying to protect is equivalent to the annual carbon emission of nearly one million people.
Through our projects we are learning more and more about all that the ocean provides us. It serves the single largest source of protein on the planet, gives us most of the air we breathe, and regulates the climate. People ride its waves, visit its reefs, and travel the world to view its wildlife in a natural setting.
Without a healthy ocean all of the beauty and benefits that it provides are in jeopardy.