World Oceans Day: Oceana Canada Issues Public Rallying Cry to Help Push the Canadian Government to Better Protect the Ocean
Press Release Date: June 6, 2023
Ottawa, traditional, unceded territory of the Algonquin Anishnaabeg People, June 6, 2023 – This World Oceans Day, June 8, comes at a critical moment. The impacts of the climate crisis are all around us, from wildfires and rising sea temperatures and sea levels, to lives and livelihoods being turned upside down. Amid all of this, however, there is some encouraging news, as individuals are starting to call for real change to protect our oceans, our planet and, ultimately, ourselves.
Oceana Canada is marking World Oceans Day by calling on the public to make their voices heard and help push the government for strong action to protect the ocean with A Drop in the Ocean, celebrating the unexpected power that emerges when individuals come together to call for solutions to help restore healthy oceans full of life and protect the planet.
According to a new Abacus Data market research poll commissioned by Oceana Canada, an overwhelming majority – 90 per cent – of Canadians want to see more action from the federal government to tackle overfishing, the extinction of marine life and the devastation from single-use plastic pollution. Seventy-one per cent of Canadians feel a personal connection to the oceans through recreation, fishing, seafood, income, culture and concern for the environment.
Oceana Canada has been at the forefront of efforts to protect the oceans by fighting biodiversity and habitat loss, plastic pollution and overfishing. Most recently, this work has contributed to the federal ban on six categories of single-use plastic items and will continue to push the federal government to meet its commitment to achieving zero plastic waste. Oceana Canada has also successfully campaigned for a legal requirement to rebuild depleted fish populations.
“Despite some of the good progress made in recent years, Canadians continue to be deeply concerned about the unprecedented threats faced by our oceans, from climate change, pollution, and overfishing to habitat destruction,” said Josh Laughren, Executive Director, Oceana Canada. “Our oceans feed billions of people, support communities, and are a life support system for the planet. Together, we can and must create the change that is urgently needed for the oceans and the planet.”
This year’s United Nations World Ocean Day theme is Tides are Changing. This is an opportunity for Canada to prioritize current oceans challenges such as pollution, overfishing and habitat loss, particularly given how important the oceans are to Canadians: 91 per cent of survey respondents feel oceans play an important role in the health of the environment, and an equal number recognizes their role in the economy of many communities.
To learn more about A Drop in the Ocean and to join Oceana Canada please visit oceana.ca/MakeWaves.
Oceana Canada was established as an independent charity in 2015 and is part of the largest international advocacy group dedicated solely to ocean conservation. Oceana Canada has successfully campaigned to ban single-use plastics, end the shark fin trade, make rebuilding depleted fish populations the law, improve the way fisheries are managed and protect marine habitat. We work with civil society, academics, fishers, Indigenous Peoples and the federal government to return Canada’s formerly vibrant oceans to health and abundance. By restoring Canada’s oceans, we can strengthen our communities, reap greater economic and nutritional benefits and protect our future. Find out more at www.oceana.ca.