World Oceans Day 2021

The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods

Dr. Mohan Kumar Das and Md. Simul Bhuyan

11 June, 2021 12:00 AM printer

No water, no life. No blue, no green.” Ocean regarded as the lungs of planet earth that provide more than half of oxygen (O2) in the atmosphere. The ocean is considered the earth's lifeblood, absorbing 32 percent of CO2 from the atmosphere. The ocean also contributes to aquaculture, mariculture, renewable energy, carbon sequestration (removal of CO2 from the atmosphere and long-term storage in a reservoir), coastal protection, garbage disposal, and biodiversity. Plants, animals, and other species live in the oceans, which cover over 70% of the earth's surface. Since the ocean is home to the majority of the world's biodiversity, we as humans must find a new equilibrium and establish a connection that is inclusive, innovative, and beneficial to the ocean and its inhabitants. 50-80% of all life on Earth is found in the ocean. The ocean is vital to our economy, with ocean-based sectors expected to employ 40 million people by 2030.

The global economy is worth 88 trillion dollars. The sea contributes 24 trillion dollars to the total 88 trillion dollars. By 2050, the world's population will reach 900 billion, with the majority of their food coming from the sea. The ocean supports the livelihoods of almost three billion people. Oceans are ranked seventh (7) among the top ten economies in the world. It contributes 15% of the world's protein, 30% of its oil and gas, and 50% of its magnesium (Mg). It supplies a large number of life-saving medicines to the global population. According to Gunter Pauli, who wrote a book about the blue economy, it will take ten years for 100 breakthroughs to create ten million employment. Only around 5% of the world's oceans have been studied, and there is much more to be discovered.

Every year on June 8th, the world celebrates World Ocean Day. In 1992, at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the concept of World Oceans Day was initially proposed. The concept was offered as a way to honour the ocean and people's relationship with it. The United Nations Division for Ocean Affairs revealed essential methods for people can help safeguard the ocean after raising awareness about its importance in our lives. However, in 2008, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 8th to be "World Oceans Day." According to UNESCO, this day is commemorated to remind everyone that the oceans are our planet's lungs. It is made more aware of how to conserve it and save it from the eventual degeneration brought on by our thoughtless actions. As a result, World Ocean Day is observed all around the world for this purpose.

'The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods' is the theme for World Oceans Day 2021. The topic will highlight how the ocean is our life supply, supporting humans as well as all other living things on the planet. This year's theme is particularly timely in the run-up to the United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, which will take place from 2021 to 2030.

The oceans have had to bear the burden of man-made damage through the years. From industrial waste to littering, the degradation of the earth's dynamics with its natural resources is destabilising the earth's dynamics, which will eventually lead to an awful conclusion. Plastic pollution has been a growing ecological problem since the 1950s, owing to increased industrial production and the use of plastic materials. The International Marine Organization was established in 1973 to address concerns such as oil pollution from ships, hazardous liquid compounds carried in bulk, sewage, rubbish, and the monitoring of ship-related air pollution. 90% of large fish populations have been decimated, and 50% of coral reefs have been devastated.

Only 1% of the world's ocean is legally protected. The ocean contains a wide range of life-saving therapeutic ingredients, anti-inflammatory, and cancer-fighting medications. So now it's up to us to protect the oceans and marine resources in order to ensure long-term development. The subject intends to strengthen international cooperation ahead of the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, which runs from 2021 to 2030 and intends to "produce scientific research and innovative technologies that may integrate ocean science with the requirements of society." We need to create an ocean connection that is inclusive, innovative, and guided by historical lessons.

The writers are Executive Director and Researcher respectively at National Oceanographic And Maritime Institute (NOAMI)