World Oceans Day

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"Ocean Day" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Marine Day, China National Maritime Day, Día del Mar, or Ocean Day (South Korea).
World Oceans Day
Белая ночь над Белым морем.JPG
A sunset in the White Sea
Observed by All UN member states
Date 8 June
Next time 8 June 2016 (2016-06-08)
Frequency annual

World Oceans Day has been unofficially celebrated every 8 June since its original proposal in 1992 by Canada at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.[1] It was officially recognized by the United Nations in 2008.[2] Since then it has been coordinated internationally by The Ocean Project with greater success and global participation each year.


World Oceans Day is an annual observation to honour the world's oceans, celebrate the products the ocean provides such as seafood as well as marine life itself for aquariums, pets, and also a time to appreciate its own intrinsic value. The ocean also provides sea-lanes for international trade. Global pollution and over-consumption of fish have resulted in drastically dwindling population of the majority of species.

The Ocean Project, working in partnership with the World Ocean Network, has been promoting WOD since 2003 with its network of over 1,600 ocean conservation organizations and others throughout the world. Events performed for WOD and awareness includes beach cleanups, educational programs, art contests, film festivals, and sustainable seafood events.

World Oceans Day 2014[edit]

The World Oceans Day 2014 theme is "Together we have the power to protect the ocean", focused on raising awareness and promoting personal and community action in fun and positive ways, leading to a more aware, engaged, and sustainable society, and a healthier ocean.[3]

World Oceans Day 2013[edit]

The World Oceans Day 2013 & 2014 theme is "Together we have the power to protect the ocean".

World Oceans Day 2012[edit]

The World Oceans Day 2012 theme is "Youth: the Next Wave for Change".

The Ocean Project launched a completely revamped site for World Oceans Day 2012. After the website crashed in 2011 due to an unexpectedly large number of users, significant resources were dedicated to prevent a recurrence. It is now prepared for what is expected to be the largest celebration of the ocean ever.

There were over 600 events planned in 55 countries.

World Oceans Day 2011[edit]

The World Oceans Day 2011 theme is the same as its 2012 celebration.

World Oceans Day 2010[edit]

In partnership with Dr. Seuss and the Census of Marine Life, World Oceans Day 2010's theme of "Oceans of Life: Pick your favorite * Protect your favorite" had seen an increase in participation.

The Ocean Project and World Ocean Network recorded over 300 events for WOD 2010, a 26% increase over 2009. Participation in the United States increased by 32% (with participation in 37 states, as compared to 25 states the previous year). 2010 also boasted several additional countries (a total of 45 globally) that held events, including Bangladesh, Belgium, French Polynesia, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Malta, Malaysia, Venezuela, and Portugal.

First UN-recognized World Oceans Day[edit]

On the first World Oceans Day the Secretary-General of the United Nations gave the following message:

The first observance of World Oceans Day allows us to highlight the many ways in which oceans contribute to society. It is also an opportunity to recognize the considerable challenges we face in maintaining their capacity to regulate the global climate, supply essential ecosystem services and provide sustainable livelihoods and safe recreation.

Indeed, human activities are taking a terrible toll on the world’s oceans and seas. Vulnerable marine ecosystems, such as corals, and important fisheries are being damaged by over-exploitation, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, destructive fishing practices, invasive alien species and marine pollution, especially from land-based sources. Increased sea temperatures, sea-level rise and ocean acidification caused by climate change pose a further threat to marine life, coastal and island communities and national economies.

Oceans are also affected by criminal activity. Piracy and armed robbery against ships threaten the lives of seafarers and the safety of international shipping, which transports 90 per cent of the world’s goods. Smuggling of illegal drugs and the trafficking of persons by sea are further examples of how criminal activities threaten lives and the peace and security of the oceans.

Several international instruments drawn up under the auspices of the United Nations address these numerous challenges. At their centre lies the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It provides the legal framework within which all activities in the oceans and seas must be carried out, and is the basis for international cooperation at all levels. In addition to aiming at universal participation, the world must do more to implement this Convention and to uphold the rule of law on the seas and oceans.

The theme of World Oceans Day, “Our oceans, our responsibility”, emphasizes our individual and collective duty to protect the marine environment and carefully manage its resources. Safe, healthy and productive seas and oceans are integral to human well-being, economic security and sustainable development.[4]


The Ocean Project/World Ocean Network international partner network theme

  • 2011/2: Youth: the Next Wave for Change
  • 2010: Oceans of Life / Pick your favorite * Protect your favorite
  • 2009: One Climate, One Ocean, One Future

UN Theme

  • 2012: Youth: the Next Wave for Change
  • 2011: Our oceans: greening our future
  • 2010: Our oceans: opportunities and challenges
  • 2009: Our Oceans, Our Responsibility

See also[edit]


  1. ^ About World Oceans Day. The Ocean Project
  2. ^ Resolution adopted by the General Assembly, 63/111. Oceans and the law of the sea, paragraph 171: "Resolves that, as from 2009, the United Nations will designate 8 June as World Oceans Day". 5 December 2008
  3. ^ [1] IUCN finds empowering local communities key to ocean conservation
  4. ^ Message of the Secretary-General

External links[edit]