“One of the greatest feelings in the world is knowing that we as individuals can make a difference.” Jeff Bridges
When it comes to protecting our ocean and changing the world for the better, we are all in the same boat. We promote and collaborate with some incredibly thoughtful and forward-thinking people and organizations that have gone beyond business as usual, to take serious action. We are proud and excited to spotlight them here:
Mission Blue – Winning the TED Prize in 2009 has helped Dr. Dr. Sylvia Earle and her teams at Mission Blue and the Sylvia Earle Alliance (S.E.A.), to focus on a major pillar of ocean sustainability. Dr. Earle calls them Hope Spots – they are marine protected areas in areas around the world and they have proven to create conditions for ocean renewal.
Ocean Impact Alliance – To support the creation of a sustainable blue economy OIA unites leaders in conservation, business and finance to find, develop and support high-quality investment opportunities that have indisputable positive impacts on our ocean. Its online platform supports entrepeneurs with consulting, fundraising, eco-impact assessments and investor connections.
Story of Stuff – Annie Leonard and her team at Story of Stuff are indeed true change makers working on issues like banning microbeads and stopping bottled water companies from taking water at the expense of the people. The SOS journey began with a 20-minute online movie about the way we make, use and throw away all the Stuff in our lives. The following year, their Story of Change urged us to step out of our consumer mindset, into taking action as citizens to build a better future by exercising our citizen responsibilities.
UW 360 – ADEX 2017 – Three Asia-based scuba magazines and two successful dive shows, UW 360 includes Asian Diver, Scuba Diver Australasia, Scuba Diver Ocean Planet and the ADEX Shows held annually in Singapore and Beijing. UW 360 is an industry leader in bringing conservation issues to the forefront of marine tourism businesses and recreational dive travel.
Ocean Geographic Society – Based in Australia, OGS takes its readers on virtual adventures through its Ocean Geographic Magazine, and on real-life explorations and expeditions to wild ocean places. OGS uses stunning photography and reporting from the field to educate readers about the importance of our seas.
Ocean First Institute – The Ocean First Institute merges science, education, and sustainability to promote, protect and preserve our marine environments. Ocean First Institute partners with businesses to increase sustainable business practices through its eco-certification program. The Institute continues its outreach into schools and after school programs to educate future generations about our ocean and its importance to life on the planet. Ocean First Institute provides effective tools and resources for ocean stewards to increase awareness, improve ocean literacy and take action in reducing harmful human impacts on ocean environments.
Green Fins – is an organization dedicated to implementing environmental standards in the diving and snorkeling industry with the aim of mitigating the damage caused by diver impact on the marine environment. The Green Fins’ code of conduct is a set of 15 points aimed to address the most common and detrimental effects that scuba divers and snorkelers have on the marine habitat. Dive centers and tour operations pledge to adhere to this code of conduct, while Greens Fins consultants provide assistance and monitor these operations to check for compliance.
Ocean Futures Society – Through filmmaking and hands-on projects, Jean-Michel Cousteau and his team helps people make the connection between their actions and the survival of the planet: “Protect the Oceans and you protect yourself.” Jean Michel is also a vocal spokesperson for the release of marine mammals from captivity.
Blue Mind Collective – Blue Mind author and scientist Dr Wallace J. Nichols and his growing network of neuroscientists, oceanographers, educators, psychologists, artists and sports enthusiasts who have contributed their research, experiences and voices to the exploration of the true value of water that lies beyond short-term economic horizons.
Coral Restoration Foundation – the Coral Restoration Foundation is a nonprofit ocean conservation organization dedicated to restoring our coral reefs by creating offshore coral nurseries. With our propagation techniques tens of thousands of corals are grown and then outplanted to reefs allowing them to continue on a path of natural recovery. Students, scientists and volunteers have donated their time to helping these corals grow and replenish our reefs. To find out how you might contribute to this effort contact them here.
The Safina Center – An education ark that supports the growing work of its Fellows and its Founder Dr. Carl Safina, the The Safina Center creates an original blend of science, art and literature that inspires a deeper connection with nature, especially the sea.
Colorado Ocean Coalition – The Colorado Ocean Coalition (COCO) was founded in 2011, with a vision to inspire an inland community to be stewards of our ocean. COCO believes that you don’t have to be near the ocean to care about it. Our complex global economy and the interconnectedness of ecological systems mean that the actions we take inland impact the health of the sea. COCO’s mission is to lead a community of individuals to understand our connection to the ocean, to unite through shared conservation values, and advocate and celebrate actions that promote a healthy ocean.
Bird’s Head Seascape – This protected marine sanctuary in West Papua, Indonesia is the center of the world’s marine biodiversity. The reserve comprises 183,000 square kilometers and includes, rare birds, mammals, plants and over 100 villages. Note that many of the images on the Blue Ocean website were taken by Burt Jones and Maurine Shimlock in the Bird’s Head Seascape and nearby Raja Ampat. Visit Burt’s and Maurine’s photo gallery to see their spectacular images. To find out more about the Bird ‘s Head Seascape join in their interview on the Blue Ocean Summit 2014 or visit the Bird’s Head website.
Contributing Photo Professionals
Amos Nachoum – Master of megafauna, Amos Nachoum is the founder of Big Animals Expeditions that caters to photographers who want to experience big animals in their natural realms in a pure and uncompromising state. Iconic images of Blue Whales, Great Whites, Polar Bears and more featured on this site, are inspiring reminders of the raison d’etre behind the Blue Ocean online community.
Burt Jones and Maurine Shimlock – Racking up many firsts in underwater photography locations, this daring duo have become marine tourism consultants to Conservation International. Burt and Maurine have used their photography, books and extensive experience to conserve the center of our planet’s biodiversity found in Raja Ampat and the Birdshead Seascape off West Papua New Guinea. Find their beautiful images across our portal.
Banner Image © Jones/Shimlock—Secret Sea Visions